Trump breaks ranks with Europe on Erdogan's win in Turkey's referendum

The pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples' Democratic Party has said it presented complaints about unstamped ballots affecting three million voters.

"When the High Electoral Board (YSK) announces official results, our president will be able to return to the party", Yildirim told reporters in front of AKP headquarters.

The referendum was widely seen as a plebiscite on Erdogan, who has led his country through more than a decade of economic growth and development, first as prime minister and then as president.

"Everyone should respect the outcome, especially the main opposition", he added.

Erdogan has lashed back at the OSCE global monitors' initial findings, telling them to "know their place", Reuters reports.

"The tight referendum result shows how deeply divided Turkish society is and that means a big responsibility for the Turkish leadership and for President Erdogan personally", Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel and Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said in a joint statement, calling for a "respectful dialogue" in Ankara with the opposition and all parts of Turkish society.

The opposition has been particularly incensed by a last-minute move from the YSK to accept ballot documents in envelopes without an official stamp.

"Any decision to reintroduce the death penalty would take Turkey further away (from joining the EU)", said Alfano.

Worldwide observers have expressed harsh criticism of the unfairness of the elections, given that Erdogan has launched a campaign through intimidation prior to the vote. "You can not build a change in the political system on such a controversial and unfair referendum".

In an exclusive interview with CNN, Erdogan said that a constitutional reform package - backed by a narrow majority of Turkey's voters in a referendum on Sunday - was not about him.

In Sunday's referendum, Turkish electors voted 51.4 per cent in favour of constitutional changes that will turn Turkey into a presidential republic similar to the United States and France could enable Erdogan to stay in power until 2029.

Mr Evans said three-quarters of TV and press coverage of the campaign had been given to Erdogan's Yes campaign, while ruled were changed to allow unstamped ballot papers to be counted.

Other world leaders have struck a different tone to Trump after the vote in Turkey, in response to preliminary findings from global bodies which described the referendum as taking place "on an unlevel playing field".

  • Leroy Wright