Turkey’s Supreme Election Committee (YSK) confirmed the victory of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on Sunday’s presidential election. Commission President Sadi Guven said that after counting nearly 98 per cent of the votes, Erdogan has won more than half of the valid ones.

Guven added that according to unofficial election information five parties will enter in the Parliament. These are Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP), its ally, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), the main secular opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), the pro-Kurdish Democratic Party of Peoples (HDP) and the newly-formed ultra-nationalist IYI (Good) Party.

Turkey “went through another check for democracy, giving an example to the whole world”, said Erdogan ahead of the Justice and Development Party’s supporters in Ankara after it was announced as a winner of the presidential election.

According to his words, the country will “gain a much better place in the international arena” and “improve the peace and prosperity of each of its citizens”.

He thanked Turkish citizens, saying that the turnout was the highest in Turkey’s history and added that it would continue to “release Syrian land” and correct its party’s mistakes during its forthcoming presidential mandate.

The June 2018 elections mark the start of a new era in the governance system of Turkey, in which executive powers are transferred to the president. This is happening at a time when President Erdogan and his government are subject to criticism from the outside that they are relying on the benefits of democracy and also for inconsistencies with Western allies in foreign policy. As he did in previous elections, Erdogan said in his first post-election speech that he wants to leave the divisions in the past and promised a better democracy for all.

In practice, Erdogan will govern a different Turkey – the country will now have a new political system with greater powers for the Head of State thanks to the constitutional amendments approved with a referendum last year.

The president will appoint deputy presidents, a government (which will not have a prime minister) and senior magistrates, will be able to issue a statement and declare a state of emergency, as well as dismiss parliament on whatever reason he wishes, but will automatically convene extraordinary elections (which will always be for President and Parliament at the same time).

Erdogan’s critics described yesterday elections as their last chance to prevent Turkey from becoming an authoritarian state, stressed “New York Times”. The victory of the Turkish leader could have serious consequences for co-operation with NATO, security in Iraq and Syria and the control of immigration flows towards Europe.

Turkey has continued co-operation with its Western allies in the fight against terrorism, but Erdogan has tested NATO after the warming of his relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and the purchase of Russian rocket systems and last but not least the plans to entrust Russia with the construction of a nuclear reactor in Turkey, recalls the authoritative newspaper.