Erdogan’s AKP leads in Istanbul, Ankara in Turkish local elections

March 31, 2019

ANKARA (Reuters) – Candidates from President Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party (AKP) were leading mayoral elections in Turkey’s two main cities after about one quarter of ballots had been opened, broadcaster NTV said on Sunday.

It said the AKP candidate in Istanbul, the country’s largest city, had 51.8 percent with 24.4 percent of ballot boxes opened. The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) candidate had 45.8 percent.

The AKP was also leading in the capital Ankara with 51.6 percent of votes after 22.5 percent of ballots were opened, NTV said.

Preliminary vote counts at similar stages of previous elections have often shown a strong lead for the AKP over opposition parties, which has narrowed as counting continued.

(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu and Ece Toksabay)

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