FIRST AIRED: June 24, 2018

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00:00:00
>> Polling stations have closed across Turkey in an election that's proving to be the biggest ballot box challenge faced by incumbent president Tayyip Erdogan, in his more than a decade and a half in power.>>
FOREIGN]
> His feisty performance at election rallies has galvanized Turkey's long demoralized and divided opposition. He's promised to reverse what opposition parties see as a swing towards authoritarianism.
00:00:23
The new powers it bestows are why Erdogan moved the presidential and parliamentary election forward for November 2019. He says he needs them to tackle the nation's mounting economic problems, and deal with Kurdish rebels in southeast Turkey and neighboring Iraq and Syria. But critics the executive presidency will further erode democracy.
00:00:43
And Erdogan hadn't counted on Muharrem İnce, presidential candidate of the secularists' republican people's party.>>
SOUND] A
d polls now show that Erdogan is falling short of the first round victory in the presidential race, though he would be likely to win a run-off on July the 8th.
00:01:16
Polls also suggest his ruling AK Parti could fall short of a majority in Parliament. This election has been held under a state of emergency, implemented following an attempted coup in 2016. Turkey's opposition say emergency rule has been used to stifle dissent. Few newspapers or other media have openly criticized the government.
00:01:37
And Erdogan has received far more election coverage than any other candidates.