Ankara, April 1: Turkey's main opposition, the Republican People's Party (CHP), has claimed a major victory in local polls in 35 mayoralties throughout the country, according to unofficial results of Sunday's local elections. This comes as a jolt to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's whose Justice and Development Party (AKP) won 24 mayoral positions.

The People's Equality and Democracy Party (DEM) won 10, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) 8, the Welfare Party 2, the Great Unity Party (BBP) 1, and the Good Party (iYi) one position, Turkish Supreme Election Council Chairman Ahmet Yener told reporters on Monday. Turkey: Setback for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as Opposition Secures Major Victories in Local Elections.

In the elections for 30 metropolitan municipalities, the CHP won 14 mayoral positions, the AKP 12, the DEM 3, and the Welfare Party 1 mayoral position, Xinhua news agency reported. Yener said the local elections went "smoothly", with a participation rate of 78.11 per cent.

Incumbent CHP mayors in Istanbul and Ankara kept control of their municipalities on Sunday, while the opposition had major gains in many other cities, delivering a surprise defeat to President Erdogan. ‘Hamas Not a Terrorist Organisation,’ Says Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Calls It ‘Patriotic Group That Defends Its Territory and People’ (Watch Video).

In his address to his supporters on early Monday, the Turkish president acknowledged the election failure and said the results were "not an end" for them "but rather a turning point". "Thanks to the common sense of our citizens, Turkish democracy proved its maturity once again," Erdogan said in the capital Ankara.

The AKP could not get the desired result, he said, adding "the results of the ballot boxes show us that we have lost height. We will identify the problems and take the necessary measures".

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 01, 2024 09:59 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website