Turkey election: Who are the presidential frontrunners?

Erdogan expects Turkey’s development level to reach the levels of Russia, US

Read FP’s Coverage of Sunday’s Elections in Turkey

There were no exit polls and the first results were expected later in the evening. The victor will assume vast new presidential powers.

For Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Sunday should be a time of celebration: It marks the day Turkey becomes a presidential republic, endowing his office with vast powers - a change he has long desired. He attacked his opposition for lacking vision, and boasted of his achievements in office - such as new infrastructure and improved healthcare.

Earlier, a crowd of Erdogan's supporters chanted his name as he emerged from a school after voting in Turkey's largest city Istanbul, shaking hands with people amid tight security. He painted a bleak picture of Turkey under Erdogan, saying its currency would remain weak, and its refugee problems unresolved.

His supporters say only Erdogan can guarantee Turkey's economic and political stability in hard times.

Al Jazeera's Sinem Koseoglu takes a look at the frontrunners.

Voting is under way in Turkey's crucial parliamentary and presidential elections, pitting a strongman leader who has transformed the country's political system against a resurgent opposition warning of "one-man rule".

Voters will put two separate ballot papers in the same envelope - one for the presidential and one for the parliamentary elections.

With more than 62 percent of the parliamentary votes counted, the AK Party's People's Alliance was ahead with 56.7 percent of the votes and the Nation's Alliance was in second place with 32.1 percent of the votes.

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Speaking in Istanbul, Mr Erdogan urged Turks to vote. The CHP had 19 percent and the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) 9 percent.

Six candidates are vying for the Turkish presidency.

The stakes in this election are particularly high as the new president will be the first to enjoy enhanced powers under a new constitution agreed in an April 2017 referendum strongly backed by Erdogan.

The head of Turkey's electoral commission said authorities had taken action following reports of irregularities at voting stations in southeastern Turkey.

President Recep Erdogan has since the attempted coup acted to reassert his position and his power, including through the imposition of emergency law that enables him to pass legislation without parliamentary scrutiny or intervention from the judiciary. But this time he faces what may be his greatest political challenge: himself.

But he reckoned without Muharrem Ince, the presidential candidate of the secularist Republican People's Party (CHP), whose feisty performance at campaign rallies has galvanized Turkey's long-demoralised and divided opposition. He said they are closely watching the security of the votes cast and asked all monitors not to leave their duties before the counting and recording of the votes is completed, in order to prevent fraud in the interim stages. The Supreme Electoral Council announced it would investigate an incident in the southern province of Urfa, where observers reported attempts at ballot stuffing. Without them, many said, the country could not function. "With the presidential system, Turkey is seriously raising the bar, rising above the level of contemporary civilizations".

"I hope for the best for our nation", Ince said on June 24 as he voted in his native port town of Yalova, south of Istanbul. This state restricts some freedoms and allows the government to bypass parliament with decrees.

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