Montenegro's PM Claims Election Victory
The prime minister`s ruling...
Montenegro`s Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic has claimed victory in parliamentary elections, according to Voice of America.
Mr. Djukanovic said after the polls closed Sunday that voters opted for economic prosperity and a European future.
The prime minister`s ruling coalition, which calls itself "For a European Montenegro," has pushed for EU membership talks.
An independent vote-monitoring group in Montenegro, Center for Monitoring. says its polling data shows the ruling coalition has a commanding lead in the poll, with 51 percent of the vote. It says the opposition pro-Serb Socialist People`s Party is second with about 17 percent.
Official election results are due Monday.
Mr. Djukanovic called the elections a year and a-half early, saying he wanted to gain a mandate for EU membership talks.
But the opposition has accused Mr. Djukanovic`s government and his supporters of calling the early vote to secure a victory before the global economic downturn strikes the Balkan nation of some 680,000 people.
The country`s economy has grown strongly since it split with Serbia in 2006. But experts say it is expected to slow significantly this year, due to the world economic crisis.