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    Turkey presidential elections: 53 million people eligible to vote

    euronews (in English)

    by euronews (in English)

    “Who will be the first president of Turkey elected by popular vote? Voters have been arriving at polling stations to decide who that will be,” asked Euronews’ correspondent in Turkey, Bora Bayraktar.

    More than 165,000 polling stations are open on Sunday.

    Around 53 million people are eligible to vote in the election to decide who will be president for the next five years.

    These elections are the first time that Turkish expatriates have been able to cast their ballots in a Turkish election.

    According to official figures, around 3 million Turkish people living abroad were eligible to vote.

    Mensur Akgün, a professor from Istanbul university said “the vote will be decided based the charisma of the leaders. It also depends on their beliefs and faith. People are voting for a personality…not for the party not their political programme. It’s hard to know if they are considering Turkey’s future. It seems this election has become the most powerful personal struggle in Turkish political history. I hope after the presidential elections things quieten down.”

    Previous presidents were chosen by the parliament but a constitutional amendment gives citizens the chance to directly choose their head of state.