Hardliner leads Serbia vote

Nationalist Tomislav Nikolic is said to be ahead in presidential vote count.

    A run-off between Boris Tadic, left, and Tomislav Nikolic looks very likely [AFP]

    "This vote is the first half of the match," Tadic said after casting his ballot.

    "The second half, on February 3, will be a chance to once again decide to conquer Europe, a better life, better salaries and pensions, greater security."

    Tadic defeated Nikolic in a run-off in 2004 after his rival topped the poll in the first round.

    Divergent views

    The incumbent president advocates integration into the European Union while Nikolic believes that Serbia should remain close to Russia, which has backed it over Kosovo, and says he favours a neutral stance between East and West.

    Nikolic was an ally of Milosevic and has played on the growing frustration over US and EU backing for Kosovo's independence after the failure of almost two years of  negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina over its future status.

    "We do not want to argue with the European Union," he said on Sunday. "We need the EU, but not at any price."


    Nikolic and his Serbian Radical Party (SRS) have promised tough measures against countries that recognise Kosovo's statehood.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why some African Americans are moving to Africa

    Escaping systemic racism: Why I quit New York for Accra

    African-Americans are returning to the lands of their ancestors as life becomes precarious and dangerous in the USA.

    What happens when the US government shuts down?

    The US government has shut down. What happens next?

    US federal government begins partial shutdown after Senate blocks short-term spending bill. What happens next?

    Why is the West praising Malala, but ignoring Ahed?

    Why is the West praising Malala, but ignoring Ahed?

    Is an empowered Palestinian girl not worthy of Western feminist admiration?