Feb 04 2019

El Salvador’s new president of Ottoman descent - pro-gov’t newspaper

Nayib Bukele, who won a landslide victory in El Salvador’s presidential election on Sunday, is of Ottoman descent, pro-government Hürriyet newspaper reported.

The 37-year-old who ran a campaign of anti-corruption, ending a quarter of a century of two-party dominance in El Salvador, is the son of a businessman and local imam of Palestinian descent.

The Ottoman Empire ruled Palestine for approximately four centuries before losing the land considered sacred in Islam to the British in 1917.

“Bukele, whose ancestors migrated to El Salvador from Palestinian land with Ottoman passports,’’ won a landslide victory against his opponents, Hürriyet wrote.

El Salvador’s new president made his political debut in 2012 as a small-town mayor with the now-ruling Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN).

The politician’s frequent criticism of the leftist party’s leadership led to his expulsion from the FMLN and he become the standard-bearer of a small conservative party, the Grand Alliance for National Unity.

One third of El Salvador 6.5 million population lives in poverty. Per capita income in the country is $3,560, according to the World Bank.