Turkey’s opposition presidential candidate Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu won the majority of votes in the country’s five largest provinces, where one-fourth of the voters reside, despite a narrow defeat against Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in the controversial election run-off.
Kılıçdaroğlu received 54 percent of valid votes in Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Bursa and Antalya but lost the presidential race at 47.82 percent overall according to results from ballot boxes across the country and in the diaspora.
In Istanbul, Turkey’s most populous province, the challenger received approximately 51.78 percent of the nearly 10 million votes cast. The city with the highest Turkish and Kurdish population in the world, saw the opposition leader gain around 192,500 more votes compared to the first round, while Erdoğan was able to increase his votes by 29,900.
Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kılıçdaroğlu received 51.23 percent of votes in the capital city Ankara, while in the western coastal city of Izmir, he managed to gather more than one-third of the votes, reaching 67.13 percent support. Kılıçdaroğlu also secured 57.35 percent of the votes in Antalya, located in southern Turkey.
Erdoğan secured a lead against Kılıçdaroğlu with 54.66 percent against 45.34 of votes in Bursa, the only province among the top five where CHP’s mayoral candidates supported by the opposition did not win in the 2019 local elections.
The social democrat leader had secured the second position and advanced to the run-off with 44.88 of the votes in the first round of the elections on 14 May. Erdoğan has emerged victorious in the run-off, unofficially receiving 52.17 percent of the vote.