Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday called for “unity and solidarity” after narrowly winning a historic election runoff that extended his two-decade rule until 2028.
“We should come together in unity and solidarity,” Erdogan told a sea of supporters outside his presidential palace in Ankara. “We call for this with all our heart.”
Erdogan’s call came after a bitterly divisive election that saw him beat secular opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu by four percentage points in Turkey’s first presidential runoff.
Over the campaign, the two candidates accused each other of supporting “terrorists” and spreading misinformation.
Kilicdaroglu’s brief concession statement expressed “real sadness about the big difficulties awaiting the country” with Erdogan.
Erdogan told his supporters that the election was Turkey’s “most important” of the modern era.
“We have no resentment, no anger or frustration with anyone,” he said. “Today, nobody lost. The entire nation of 85 million won.”