More than 50 million eligible to vote in Turkey as ruling party seeks third straight term in office.
Polls have opened in Turkey where more than 50 million Turks are eligible to cast their ballots to elect a new 550-seat parliament.
Voting started at 7am (0400 GMT) on Sunday in eastern Turkey and an hour later in the west.
All polling stations are expected to close at 1400 GMT and preliminary results are expected after 1800 GMT.
Abdullah Gul, Turkey's president, on Friday urged citizens to turn out in force. "No one can pressure you, or keep you from voting," Gul said, according to the Hurriyet newspaper.
Voters were queuing outside polling stations in Ankara, the Turkish capital, as voting began, the AFP news agency reported.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish prime minister, whose Justice and Development Party (AKP) is seeking a third term, was among early voters in Istanbul, Turkey's main city, where he is standing as a deputy.
"We have spoken, and now it is time for the people to speak," Erdogan said. "For us, this will be the most honourable decision and one that we will have to respect. As far as I know, the election process is continuing through the country without any problems."
Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), also voted on Sunday morning in Ankara.
"We have come to the end of a long marathon," Kilicdaroglu said. "Today is the time for a decision by the people. We will respect their decision. There is a good mood. There is a democracy feast."
Devlet Bahceli, the leader of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), is expected to vote in the southern province of Osmaniye.
Candidates from 15 parties, as well as many independent candidates, are in the fray.
Party leaders have been travelling the country for weeks, often addressing several rallies a day.
Al Jazeera's Muhammad Vall, reporting from an Ankara polling station where Gul voted , said that hundreds of people had voted on Sunday morning.
"We can see how much enthusiasm there is for voting, even among the elderly," our correspondent said.
Vall said there was some polarisation between different factions within Turkish society, as was always the case in the country.
The country's electoral board, the YSK, has restricted media reporting until 9pm (1800 GMT) on Sunday.
Other rules enforced by the YSK on voting day include a ban on alcohol from Sunday morning until Monday afternoon, according to the semi-official Anatolia News Agency.
Voters are casting theor ballots in transparent plastic boxes, rather than traditional wooden boxes, for the first time - a measure introduced to prevent allegations of fraud.