Northern Cyprus presidential election, 2005

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Northern Cyprus presidential election, 2005
Northern Cyprus
2000 ←
17 April 2005 → 2010

Turnout 69.58%
  Mehmet Ali Talat (cropped).jpg Derviş Eroğlu (cropped).jpg
Candidate Mehmet Ali Talat Derviş Eroğlu
Popular vote 55,943 22,869
Percentage 55.60% 22.73%

President before election

Rauf Denktaş

Elected President

Mehmet Ali Talat

Presidential elections were held in Northern Cyprus on Sunday April 17, 2005. It followed parliamentary elections in the internationally unrecognised country on February 20, which had been won by the pro-unification Republican Turkish Party (CTP).

It is traditional in Turkish Cypriot presidential elections for political parties to nominate individuals as their candidate, although the number of independents have increased in recent polls. The CTP nominated its leader, Mehmet Ali Talat, who emerged as the clear winner with a 56% share of the vote. The notable absence in this election was the first and at that point only president of Northern Cyprus, Rauf Denktaş. He had announced in mid-2004 that he would not be running again.


A candidate needs an absolute majority of valid votes in order to win a Turkish Cypriot presidential election. If no candidate secures the necessary majority, a second round of voting is held between the two top candidates. The candidate with a simple majority in this election is elected to a five-year term as president.


The election campaign began on March 22 and will end the day before the election, on April 16. Under rules set out by the High Electoral Committee, public opinion polls cannot be published or broadcast after April 2. Results for the first round are announced a few hours after polls close.


Election results[edit]

As published by the Anatolia News Agency on April 18, 2005. Results are considered unofficial until published in the Official Gazette.

e • d Summary of the 17 April 2005 Northern Cyprus presidential election
Candidate Party Votes %
Mehmet Ali Talat Republican Turkish Party 55,943 55.60
Derviş Eroğlu National Unity Party (UBP) 22,869 22.73
Mustafa Arabacıoğlu Democrat Party (DP) 13,302 13.22
Nuri Çevikel New Party (YP) 4816 4.79
Zeki Beşiktepeli Independent 1728 1.72
Hüseyin Angolemli Communal Liberation Party (TKP) 1054 1.05
Zehra Cengiz Cyprus Socialist Party 439 0.44
Arif Salih Kırdağ Independent 306 0.30
Ayhan Kaymak Independent 168 0.17
Total (turnout 69.58%) 100,186 100
Source: Adam Carr

The Turkish Cypriot electoral commission put the turnout at 69.58% - a lower figure than previous presidential elections, which have always been over 80%. It led UBP leader Derviş Eroğlu to question the legitimacy of the election, pointing to the fact that so many voters had decided not to vote in protest.

March 30 public survey[edit]

A poll had been conducted between March 23 and March 27, 2005 by the Cyprus Social Research and Education Consultancy Centre (KADEM). It found that Mehmet Ali Talat would win an absolute majority in the first round. The poll of 1472 people across North Cyprus put the results as follows:

  • Mehmet Ali Talat - 54.9%
  • Derviş Eroğlu - 26.8%
  • Mustafa Arabacıoğlu - 8.9%
  • Hüseyin Angolemli - 2.5%
  • Nuri Çevikel - 1.2%
  • Zeki Beşiktepeli - 1.5%
  • Ayhan Kaymak - 0.6%
  • Arif Salih Kırdağ - 0.4%
  • Zehra Cengiz - 0.2%

54% of those polled said the election would be finalised in the first round, while 41% said a second round of voting would be required.