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After full recount of votes Kesimoğlu becomes Turkey’s only independent city mayor

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Mehmet Siyam Kesimoğlu, an independent candidate for mayor in northwestern Kırklareli province, has secured the office with a 112-ballot lead, after a recounting of all the votes in the city.

Kesimoğlu unofficially won by a margin of 248 votes, with Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) candidate Derya Bulut coming in second in the March 31 local election.

After the election the MHP’s Bulut applied to the election board and requested a full recount of the votes, instead of recounting only the invalid ballots.

Although the local election board rejected Bulut’s request, Turkey’s Supreme Election Board (YSK) ordered a full recount.

As of Sunday, after recounting the votes cast at 170 polling places in Kırklareli, Kesimoğlu, a former Republican People’s Party (CHP) politician, was still leading.

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