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Elections in Montenegro: According to extrapolation, Djukanovic and Milatović in run-off elections

Elections in Montenegro: According to extrapolation, Djukanovic and Milatović in run-off elections

In the presidential election in Montenegro, pro-Western Milo Djukanovic wins the most votes, but he has to go through a run-off. According to projections from Sunday evening, Djukanovic has reached 37.20 percent and thus missed the 50 percent mark that was required for a first-round election. In the April 2 run-off, his opponent will be the pro-European economic Jakov Milatović.

According to the first forecasts, he received 26.60% of the vote. He was ahead of pro-Serbian politician Andrija Mandic, who favored closer ties between the NATO country and neighboring Serbia and Russia, with 19.8 percent. The voter turnout was 63 percent.

Divided population

Montenegro, with a population of around 620,000, is largely dependent on tourism income. The country is one of the six Western Balkan countries that wish to join the European Union and its currency is the euro. The population is divided: while members of one population group consider themselves Montenegrins, others see themselves as Serbs and reject independence declared in 2006 from the successor state of Yugoslavia, Serbia and Montenegro. Montenegro joined NATO in 2017 after an attempted coup a year earlier. The government blamed Russian agents and Serbian nationalists. After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Montenegro joined EU sanctions against Moscow. So the Kremlin put the country on its list of unfriendly countries.

Djukanovic has held the highest political offices in Montenegro for decades. His opponents and his left-wing party accuse him of corruption and ties to organized crime. The Chief and the DPS reject this.

Montenegro has been in a political crisis for a long time. Votes of no confidence and arguments between the president and deputies were repeated. Djukanovic dissolved parliament just on Thursday and called snap parliamentary elections on June 11.

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