Turkish candidate drops out in boost to Erdogan’s main challenger

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A candidate in Turkey’s presidential election has withdrawn from the race. The move is likely to benefit President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s main challenger, opposition leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu. The candidate who left the race on Thursday is Muharrem Ince, the leader of the center-left Homeland Party. He was was one of four contenders in Sunday’s presidential election. Ince had come under intense criticism for running and potentially ciphering support from Kilicdaroglu’s candidacy. Ince told reporters Thursday he was withdrawing “for my country.” The 58-year-old former physics teacher ran against Erdogan in 2018 on the ticket of Kilicdaroglu’s CHP party. He had garnered around 30% of the vote but later broke away from the party.