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Erdogan's AKP formally submits appeal to cancel Istanbul election

AKP deputy chairman Ali Ihsan Yavuz confirmed AKP decision to appeal Istanbul election and call for cancellation
AKP lost the mayoral elections of Istanbul and Ankara after holding onto both cities for decades (Reuters)

Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) will submit an appeal on Tuesday calling on election authorities to cancel the Istanbul municipal election and re-run the city's local elections. 

Ali Ihsan Yavuz, the deputy chairman of AKP - the party of current president Recep Tayyip Erdogan - confirmed his party's decision to appeal the Istanbul election in a tweet

The latest appeal comes as Turkey's High Election Board overturned a local decision to order a second recount of votes in an Istanbul district on Monday.

Initial results showed the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) candidate Ekrem Imamoglu narrowly winning control of Turkey's biggest city in the mayoral election. 

Turkish broadcaster CNN Turk said the AKP's appeal would be submitted to the high election board at 3:30pm.

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Earlier on Tuesday, Turkey's finance minister Berat Albayrak tried to reassure investors that another election in Istanbul would not have an impact on the Turkish economy. 

Speaking in Washington, Albayrak said: "Whatever happens in the Istanbul elections, the markets bought both scenarios."

The fallout from Turkey's local elections has continued to ripple across the country. 

Over the weekend, repeated AKP challenges have led to growing frustration among CHP supporters, which spilt over onto the football terraces at the weekend when Istanbul’s top teams played two derby matches.

“Give the mandate, give Imamoglu the mandate now,” fans of Besiktas and Fenerbahce chanted, as their teams played league leaders Basaksehir and runners-up Galatasaray.

Last week, Turkey's top legal body for election affairs also refused to grant mandates to pro-Kurdish mayoral elections that were expelled from service under the state of emergency. 

The Supreme Election Board (YSK) said that the district level mayor-elects - all members of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democracy Party (HDP) - weren’t qualified for office and runner-up candidates were eligible to become new mayors.

The decision qualifies ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) members to take the mandates won in the 31 March local election, in six district municipalities in Erzurum, Van and Diyarbakir, and two town municipalities in Kars and Siirt. 

The HDP branded the decision a conspiracy by the AKP and its nationalist allies to avoid losing key seats in the east of Turkey.

"This step taken by the YSK is part of a deliberate political conspiracy, nothing else," spokesman Saruhan Oluc said.

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