Turkish Cypriot politicians on Sunday night and Monday hailed the results of Turkey’s local elections, which saw opposition party the CHP secure an unprecedented victory, trouncing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party.

Turkish Cypriot Nicosia mayor Mehmet Harmanci said, “the picture emerging across Turkey is that the cost of the economic crisis is being clearly reflected at the ballot box.”

“I wish success to our friends elected in all cities, especially my dear friend Istanbul mayor Ekrem Imamoglu and Ankara mayor Mansur Yavas.”

Turkish Cypriot Kyrenia mayor Murat Senkul quoted late Turkish President Suleyman Demirel, saying “there is no power that an empty pan cannot wash.”

“This unwritten rule has come to life once again in [Turkey’s] local elections. You may be able to manage poverty for a while, but if you cannot solve it, the result is clear. The AK Party, which was said to be invincible, has been defeated,” he said.

“Events in the past have repeatedly shown us what a pragmatic leader [Turkish President Recep Tayyip] Erdogan is. We will all see if he will be able to achieve this again, but the problem seems to be based on economics.”

The north’s ‘transport minister’ Erhan Arikli said the fact that there are now no elections scheduled to take place in Turkey until 2028 will allow for a period of stability in the country.

“We believe that during this period of stability, Turkey will overcome its economic and social problems, the necessary rational measures will be taken, and the country will arrive at a much better place,” he said.

“The four-year period of unadulterated stability is also of interest to us. Turkey … is our greatest source of security and pride.”

Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar has not yet made a statement in the aftermath of the results. During the campaign, he had offered his support to the AK Party and its Istanbul candidate Murat Kurum.

Tatar and Kurum shared an iftar meal, the breaking of the Ramadan fast, with him in the week before the election, with Tatar saying Kurum had “greatly helped in the opening of Varosha” when he was Turkey’s environment minister in 2020.

Sunday’s results represent an unlikely and historic victory for Turkey’s opposition, which had become accustomed to electoral defeat since Erdogan’s AK Party was formed in 2001.

No party had beaten them in a national count since their formation until the CHP managed to do so on Sunday.

In addition, the CHP managed to secure the mayoralties of all of Turkey’s five largest cities, pulling off landslide victories in all five.

Of particular importance are largest city Istanbul and the capital Ankara, where the CHP candidates won by 11 and 30 points respectively.