TURKEY

AK Party candidate Mevlüt Uysal elected as new mayor of Istanbul

AK PARTY CANDIDATE MEVLÜT UYSAL ELECTED AS NEW MAYOR OF ISTANBUL

AK Party candidate Mevlüt Uysal was elected as the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Mayor by majority of votes of the Istanbul municipal council after the resignation of former mayor Kadir Topbaş.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) mayoral candidate Mevlüt Uysal was elected on Thursday by the Istanbul municipal council to replace former Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Mayor Kadir Topbaş.

The Council of Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality elected Uysal, who get 179 out of 308 votes, in the third round of the elections.

Ekrem İmamoğlu, candidate of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), recieved 125 votes.

The election came after Istanbul's former Mayor Kadir Topbaş resigned from his post last Friday.

Speaking at a press conference in Istanbul, Topbaş said while he was stepping down as mayor, he would not cut ties with the ruling party.

Uysal, who has been serving as mayor of the Istanbul's fast developing Başakşehir district, was picked as the party's candidate after conducting tendency surveys, said Erol Kaya, the Deputy AK Party Chairman responsible for local administrations.

Istanbul's long-standing mayor Kadir Topbaş unexpectedly resigned last week after serving for 13 years.

Topbaş, an architect by profession, has been the mayor of Istanbul since 2004 and has presided over the transformation of the mega city that began under the mayorship of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Topbaş has had his fair share of criticism in the recent year after his son-in-law was accused of links to the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) blamed for last year's coup attempt. Recently, Topbaş was at odds with the city council over his opposition to new zoning plans for the city of 14.8 million people.

In a vague statement at a press conference last week, Topbaş announced he would step down from office though he did not give an exact reason and underlined that he would continue serving the AK Party.

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