Turkey’s Erdogan and Kilicdaroglu face off in second-round presidential vote

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Voters in Turkey return to the polls Sunday to decide whether the country’s longtime leader, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, stretches his increasingly authoritarian rule into a third decade, or is unseated by challenger Kemal Kilicdaroglu, who has promised to restore a more democratic society. Follow FRANCE 24’s live blog for all the latest developments.

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  • Erdogan, who has been at Turkey’s helm for 20 years, is favored to win a new five-year term in the second-round runoff  the first presidential runoff election in Turkey’s history  after finishing just four percentage points ahead of Kilicdaroglu in the first round on May 14.
  • Kilicdaroglu is the candidate of a six-party alliance and leader of Turkey’s center-left main opposition party. The 74-year-old former bureaucrat has described the runoff as a referendum on the country’s future.
  • Strong voter participation was expected on Sunday after the May 14 election saw turnout of 87%. More than 64 million people are eligible to cast ballots.
  • Polls closed at 5pm local time. Turkey does not have exit polls, but preliminary results are expected within hours.

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(FRANCE 24 with AFP, AP and Reuters)

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