Serb opposition threatens to withdraw from run-off vote
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Since: May 12
#1 May 13, 2012
The leader of Serbia's rightist opposition said on Saturday he may pull out of a presidential run-off this month after accusing incumbent President Boris Tadic of rigging the first stage of the election.
Tomislav Nikolic said his Serbian Progressive Party would begin "peaceful, democratic and non-violent protests across Serbia" from Sunday, accusing the dominant Democratic Party of fraud during the presidential and parliamentary vote on May 6. FREE GUIDES AND REPORTS FROM DIANOMI ADVERTISEMENT Peer-to-Peer Lending Looking for an alternative to the high street banks? Find out more Peer-to-Peer Lending Looking for an alternative to the high street banks? Find out more
"A decision ... on whether there will be a second round will be taken tomorrow," he told reporters. "I'm tempted to believe that Boris Tadic didn't even get into the second round."
The second round on May 20 would see Nikolic go head-to-head with Democratic Party leader and pro-Western Tadic, with the incumbent the favourite to win a new five-year term.
Tadic beat Nikolic in the first-round of the presidential race by less than one percentage point. Nikolic's party narrowly won the parliamentary election, but faces being locked out of government by a renewed alliance of the second-placed Democrats and the third-placed Socialist Party.
Nikolic said he did not recognise the official results of the May 6 vote announced by the state electoral commission.
The commission on Saturday rejected allegations made by Nikolic that the Democratic Party defrauded 500,000 votes. His party has produced thousands of what it says are fraudulent ballot papers in sacks.
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