Erdogan to Face Main Rival, Two Others as Election List Closes

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will face his main opponent Kemal Kilicdaroglu at general elections on May 14 alongside two other contenders, according to a final list of four presidential candidates published on Friday.

(Bloomberg) — President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will face his main opponent Kemal Kilicdaroglu at general elections on May 14 alongside two other contenders, according to a final list of four presidential candidates published on Friday. 

The vote will be one of the biggest tests yet to Erdogan’s two decades in power. Social democrat Kilicdaroglu, 74, has challenged Erdogan before and failed. But this time a united opposition bloc has thrown its weight behind his candidacy and won the backing of the country’s largest non-aligned political group. 

Erdogan’s Week of Setbacks Worsens as Elections Approach

A former Kilicdaroglu ally, Muharrem Ince, is also standing in the presidential elections, the list showed. The 59-year-old will likely draw away support from Kilicdaroglu and make it extremely difficult for him to win in the first round of elections, many opinion polls show. He quit Kilicdaroglu’s CHP party in 2021, establishing the Homeland Party. 

The final candidate is 56-year-old Sinan Ogan, who heads Ata Alliance, a group of nationalist parties led by the anti-immigration Victory Party. Ogan’s key pledge is to send millions of Syrian refugees back to their country. He may sap support from Erdogan’s main ally, the Nationalist Movement Party.

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(Updates with details throughout)

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