Albania opposition on the brink of poll win

With counting almost over, Socialist-led coalition has 53 percent against ruling coalition's share of 36 percent.

    Albania opposition on the brink of poll win
    Socialist leader Edi Rama is expected to be the country's next prime minister [EPA]

    Albania's opposition Socialist Party-led coalition appears to have won a landslide victory in the country's general election, with only the very last ballots due to be counted.

    With about 97 percent of the vote counted, the country's election commission said the Socialists' coalition had won around 53 percent, while the Democratic Party-led coalition of Prime Minister Sali Berisha had 36 percent, 12 percentage points less than they had managed four years ago.

    Preliminary calculations on Wednesday from local analysts give the Socialists' coalition 84 seats in the 140-seat parliament.

    Socialist leader Edi Rama, expected to be the next prime minister, urged his supporters to "work towards the place we deserve - the family of united Europe". 

    Incumbent PM Berisha has yet to concede defeat.

    Sunday's election was seen as a key test in the country's ambition to join the European Union, which has yet to accept Tirana's application to join due to misgivings over its democratic maturity and deep-rooted corruption.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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