The Turkish presidential candidate and ultra-nationalist Sinan Oğan, who failed in the first round, has pledged his support to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for the runoff election on Sunday. “I call on the voters who voted for us in the first ballot to vote for Erdogan in the second ballot,” Oğan said on Monday. In the runoff election for the presidency on Sunday, incumbent Erdoğan and opposition leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu will face each other.

It is disputed whether Oğan’s public election recommendation actually has an influence on the voter decision. Shortly before his speech, the ultra-nationalist party alliance for which he was a candidate had dissolved. One of the former alliance partners called Oğan’s statement his “own political preferences”, while another ex-alliance member announced his support for Erdoğan’s challenger Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu on Sunday.

Erdoğan received the majority of votes in the election, but fell short of the required absolute majority of over 50 percent. He will face challenger Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu again on May 28, who received 44.88 percent of the vote. The third-placed right-wing candidate Sinan Oğan received 5.17 percent of the votes, while Muharrem İnce, who was eliminated before the election, received 0.43 percent.

A higher percentage of those entitled to vote took part in the vote than in the previous election: According to the electoral authority, participation was 87.04 percent and thus 0.8 percentage points higher than in 2018. Almost half of those entitled to vote went to the polls abroad (49, 40 percent). Here, however, Erdoğan received well over half of the votes (57.70)

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