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Hungary PM supporters rally ahead of vote

Supporters of Hungarian government and governor party Fidesz rally in show of strength ahead of parliamentary elections.

Last updated: 29 Mar 2014 16:54
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Viktor Orban has a good chance to get re-elected for another four-year term in parliamentary elections [Reuters]

Tens of thousands of supporters of Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban marched through Budapest in a show of strength before a parliamentary election early next month.

The crowd gathered on Saturday at the parliament building on Kossuth Square in the Hungarian capital, before a so-called "peace march" through the city centre, AFP news agency reported.

Marchers carried placards claiming: "The country is united behind you Viktor", as well as the names of towns and villages of the marchers, some from regions in neighbouring countries like Romania which have large ethnic-Hungarian populations.

Orban, tipped for re-election at the April 6 vote, was due to deliver a speech at the end of the march later Saturday.

The Peace March was organised by a nongovernmental organisation Civil Unity Forum which has close ties to Orban and has organised similar large-scale demonstrations before to express support for the 50-year-old premier.

Latest polls give Orban's Fidesz party between 32 and 38 percent support among the total population, with between 15 and 23 percent for the centre-left opposition.

The far-right party Jobbik has the support of between 14 and 20 percent of voters, according to the most recent polls.

The centre-left opposition alliance, led by the Socialist Party's Attila Mesterhazy, will hold a demonstration in Budapest Sunday with tens of thousands expected to attend.

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