(QHA) -

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan won the country’s first direct presidential election on Sunday.

“I will not be the president of only those who voted for me, I will be the president of 77 million,” Erdogan said in a victory speech.

Erdogan won some 52 percent of the votes in the August 10 election to avoid any run-off.

He will be inaugurated on 28 August.

The Turkish president was previously chosen by parliament, but a 2010 referendum gave Turks the power to choose the head of state by direct vote.

Erdogan has been Turkey’s prime minister since 2003 and was barred from standing for another term according to the rules of his party, the Islamist-rooted Justice and Development Party (AKP).

He has said that if he wins the election, he would change Turkey’s constitution to turn the largely ceremonial presidential post into the seat of executive power.

QHA