LEFKOSA, The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus 

With candidates failing to secure more than 50% of votes in the first round of presidential race in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, voters will head to the polls again in a second round of election.

With 98.64% of ballot boxes opened so far, Prime Minister Ersin Tatar has secured 32.45% of the votes, the Bayrak Radio Television Corporation reported, citing unofficial data by the election authority.

President Mustafa Akinci, an independent candidate, is the runner-up with 29.76% of the votes.

Tatar and Ersin will face off in the second round of presidential election on Oct. 18.

Electorates also voted in the referendum for the constitutional amendment to increase the number of high court judges.

While 49.80% of the voters were in favor of the amendment, 50.20% of them voted against it, according to the votes counted so far.

Eleven candidates competed in the election, with seven of them running independent.

As many as 198,867 registered voters cast ballot 738 ballot boxes.

The Supreme Election Committee is expected to announce the results by 10 p.m. (1900 GMT).

The island of Cyprus has been divided into a Turkish Cypriot government in the north, and the Greek Cypriot administration in the south since a 1974 military coup aimed at Cyprus’ annexation by Greece.

Turkey’s military intervention stopped years-long persecution and violence against Turkish Cypriots by ultra-nationalist Greek Cypriots.

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