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Polls open in Serbia's presidential election

Sunday, April 02, 2017 - 00:50

Polls open in Serbia's presidential election. Conservative Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic is runaway favourite despite opposition warnings about the extent of his domination over the Balkan country, balanced between the West and Russia. Rough cut (no reporter narration)

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Conservative Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic is the runaway favourite to win Serbia's presidential elections despite opposition warnings about the extent of his domination over the Balkan country, balanced between the West and Russia. Polls opened on Sunday (April 2) and Vucic, 47, is expected to win the first round with more than 50 percent of the vote. He is trailed in the low teens by a former rights advocate and a white-suited student whose satirical portrayal of a sleazy political fraudster has struck a chord with some voters. The role of president is largely ceremonial, but Vucic is expected to retain real power through his control of Serbia's ruling Progressive Party. As such, the election is unlikely to alter the country's delicate balancing act between the European Union, which Vucic wants Serbia to join, and Russia, with which Serbs share their Orthodox Christian faith and Slavic heritage. Pollsters said a high turnout among Serbia's 6.7 million eligible voters may yet force a run-off on April 16, Easter weekend.

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Polls open in Serbia's presidential election

Sunday, April 02, 2017 - 00:50