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Erdogan Vows 'New Era' In Turkey After Election Win

Erdogan Wins Turkish Presidency
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WATCh: Erdogan Wins Turkish Presidency

Outgoing Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed a "new era" of reconciliation in Turkey, after winning the country's first direct presidential election.

In a victory speech from the balcony of his Islamist-rooted Justice and Development Party (AKP) headquarters in Ankara late on August 10, Erdogan said: "Today we are closing an era and taking the first step for a new era."

"Let's start a new social reconciliation period today and let's leave the old discussions in the old Turkey," he added.

Erdogan won some 52 percent of the votes in the August 10 election to avoid any runoff.

He will be inaugurated on August 28.

Erdogan has been Turkey’s prime minister since 2003 and was barred from standing for another term according to AKP rules.

He has said that if he wins the election, he would change Turkey’s constitution to turn the largely ceremonial presidential post into the seat of executive power.

Erdogan's supporters point to his success in boosting the economy, keeping the country's powerful military out of politics, and giving a voice to conservatives.

But his opponents fear that he could look to control parliament, the government, and the judiciary and consolidate power.

Erdogan faced two other candidates.

Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, the joint candidate of the main opposition parties in parliament, secured about 38 percent of the vote, and Selahattin Demirtas, a Kurd who leads the left-wing People's Democratic Party, about 10 percent.

Official results are to be confirmed on August 11.

With reporting by AFP, Reuters, and AP
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