Opinion polls show the leader of the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) struggling to make up the 5-point lead shown in the first round two weeks ago.
A day before the decisive round in the Turkish presidential elections, citizens are divided between the incumbent President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his rival Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.
While the city of Istanbul, of which Erdogan was the mayor for years, is distinguished by its loyalty to him, the capital, Ankara, shows support for his rival, Kilicdaroglu.
Nostalgia for Ataturk
“What I want is to change the current government,” says Ugur Barlas, a teacher in Ankara.
He adds, “We are tired of this oppressive regime,” explaining that “my vote will be in favor of Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.”
Despite the support for Kılıçdaroğlu in the capital, opinion polls show the leader of the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) struggling to make up the 5-point difference he showed in the first round two weeks ago.
The two rivals are campaigning around the clock in what is widely seen as Turkey’s most important election in generations.
Kilicdaroglu’s popularity is based on his civil slogans and his refusal to keep the Syrian refugees in particular, and his refusal to transform Turkey into a state that follows Islamic law, according to Erdogan’s opponents.
“We want to return to the era of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founding father of post-Ottoman Turkey. We made a civilized country, and I hope we will continue in this way,” said Khadija Ishkli, a citizen.