Turkey on Sunday congratulated Ersin Tatar over his win in the Northern Cyprus presidential runoff.

“I congratulate Mr. Ersin Tatar, who has been elected as the president of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, on behalf of myself and the Turkish nation,” Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Twitter.

“Turkey will continue to make all efforts needed to protect the rights and law of the Turkish Cypriot nation,” he added.

Later, speaking to Tatar over the phone, Erdogan said that with his vision for the future and strong leadership, Tatar was able to win the race that took place in a difficult period, according to Turkey’s Directorate of Communications.

Erdogan also expressed belief in the continuation of cooperation in every field, especially in the hydrocarbon activities in the Eastern Mediterranean and the development of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), the directorate added.

Turkey’s Foreign Ministry also congratulated Tatar in a written statement, saying: “According to the unofficial election results, it was declared that Prime Minister Ersin Tatar has won the elections. We congratulate Mr. Tatar and wish him success in this supreme office he was elected.”

It added that the results reflect the free and sovereign will of the Turkish Cypriots.

“The strength of the Turkish Cypriot people stems from its ability to maintain, within the framework of democratic principles, its unity and social solidarity,” it said.

The ministry also hailed that the presidential runoff held on Sunday in the TRNC showcased the exemplary democracy of the country and the political maturity of its nation. 

“As was always the case, we will continue to work in close coordination with all institutions of the TRNC, to support the sovereign equality of the Turkish Cypriots, co-owners of the island, as well as their legitimate rights and interests in the Eastern Mediterranean under all circumstances, and fulfill our legal and historical responsibilities with utmost sensitivity and determination,” it noted.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu also congratulated Tatar over his win on Twitter.

“We wholeheartedly congratulate Ersin Tatar, who won the TRNC presidential election,” Cavusoglu said, reiterating support for the protection of legitimate rights and interests of the nation in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Separately, Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay took to Twitter to congratulate Tatar for his election victory.

“I sincerely congratulate Mr. Ersin Tatar, who was elected president in the elections that were held with transparency and showed most clearly the culture of democracy of the Turkish Cypriots to the whole world,” Oktay added, calling it “a festival of democracy in the TRNC today.”

He also spoke to Tatar over the phone and said: “A much stronger Cyprus is the desire of all of us, I hope Turkish Cypriots will achieve this with you.”

Turkish parliament speaker Mustafa Sentop also took to Twitter to say: “I congratulate Mr. Ersin Tatar, who was elected as the fifth president of the TRNC according to the [unofficial] results of the presidential elections held today in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.”

Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), also congratulated Tatar on Twitter and thanked incumbent Mustafa Akinci for his efforts to date.

Tatar, prime minister and the presidential candidate of the National Unity Party, won Sunday’s presidential runoff in the TRNC with 51.74% of the votes against independent Akinci, who secured 48.26% of the votes, according to unofficial results.

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