Click For Photo: https://i.dailymail.co.uk/1s/2019/06/23/23/15159852-0-image-a-229_1561328101498.jpgClick For Video: https://videos.dailymail.co.uk/video/mol/2019/06/23/5237501214938514035/1024x576_MP4_5237501214938514035.mp4
In a blow to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, an opposition candidate declared victory in the Istanbul mayor's race for a second time today after the government-backed candidate conceded defeat in a high-stakes repeat election.
Softly-spoken former businessman and district mayor Ekrem Imamoglu, 49, said 'Thank You, Istanbul' in a televised speech tonight.
'It - Group - Party - Whole - Istanbul
'It was not a single group or party, but the whole of Istanbul and Turkey that won this election,' Imamoglu said in his victory speech as tens of thousands of his ecstatic supporters celebrated across the city of 15million.
'Mr President, I am ready to work in harmony with you. I convey from here my request to meet with you in the shortest time possible,' he added.
Supporters - Results - Mayorship - Europe - City
His supporters were jubilant after unofficial results showed he won the mayorship of Europe's largest city in a clear majority of the vote as the election was rerun at Erdogan's request.
His opponent, former Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, conceded moments after early returns showed him trailing well behind Imamoglu, 54 per cent to 45 per cent.
Outcome - Turkey - City - Erdogan - Party
The outcome means Turkey's largest city won't be governed by Erdogan's party or its predecessor for the first time in 25 years.
Thousands of opposition supporters erupted in mass celebration outside the headquarters of the Republican People's Party, which backed Imamoglu, chanting 'Mayor again! Mayor again!'
Imamoglu - Election - March - Erdogan - Justice
Imamoglu narrowly won a previous mayoral election on March 31, but Erdogan's Justice and Development Party challenged the vote.
His relentlessly upbeat campaign paid off with an emphatic win on tonight, extending his margin of victory from just 13,000 votes in March to more than 775,000.
Turkey - Board - Results - Weeks - Recounts
Turkey's electoral board annulled the results after weeks of partial recounts. Imamoglu served 18 days as mayor and was stripped of the post with the board's order for...
Wake Up To Breaking News!
Don't touch that, you don't know where it's been.