Monday, October 3, 2022
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Akinci, Tatar go into Northern Cyprus runoff vote

Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, a pro-reunification moderate, and Ankara-backed Prime Minister Ersin Tatar will contest a runoff vote next week following an election in the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC).With results counted from 723 out of 738 polling stations, the election council said right-wing nationalist Tatar won 32.5 percent of Sunday’s vote, narrowly ahead of the incumbent, Akinci, who secured almost 30 percent in a field of 11 candidates. Centre-left candidate Tufan Erhurman trailed in third place.

With no candidate winning a majority of 50 percent, a second round between the top two contenders will be held on October 18.

Next Sunday’s winner will be tasked with overcoming Turkish Cypriots’s deep political chasms with rival Greek Cypriots in order to pave the way for a deal to end 46 years of division in Cyprus and quell tensions over offshore energy reserves.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 after a Turkish military intervention in response to a Greek-inspired coup.

The election took place amid allegations by Tatar’s political rivals that the Turkish government was trying to steer the 200,000-strong electorates towards him.

 

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