Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s reported lead over his key rival Kemal Kilicdaroglu has narrowed rapidly as the number of ballots counted increases in Turkey’s most pivotal elections in a generation.
With 67.1% of ballot boxes results, Erdogan is winning with 51.4% of the vote and Kilicdaroglu had 42.8%. The opposition said its parallel count shows Kilicdaroglu ahead by less than a percentage point. Earlier in the night, Erdogan’s share of the vote was reported at 59.5%.
Erdogan, Turkey’s longest-serving leader,
He has molded the NATO member into a regional power that plays a growing role from Ukraine to Syria. But increasingly erratic economic policies have left the 69-year-old incumbent vulnerable to voter resentment after an inflation crisis last year gutted household budgets.
Kilicdaroglu, 74, has the backing of the nation’s broadest-ever grouping of opposition parties. In along with repairing broken connections with the West and returning to economic traditional values, he made a promise to re establish the rule of law.
The world’s money managers are waiting for the election’s outcome to decide whether Turkey becomes a “buy” again. Foreign money flooded Turkey’s equity and debt markets during Erdogan’s first decade in power, but investors exited in recent years as Erdogan’s growth-at-all-costs policies debased the nation’s currency.