Serbia’s president Vucic on track to win second term
Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic is on track to clinch his second term in office after the country went to the polls on Sunday.
According to polling data with 90 percent of ballots counted, the Vucic’s Serbian Progressive Party secured about 43 percent of the votes in the election.
Vucic’s main opponent, the Alliance for Victory coalition, was in second earning 13.5 percent of the vote, with the Socialist party just behind, according to the Center for Free Elections and Democracy.
Vucic joins Hungary’s Viktor Orban as regional allies of Russian President Vladimir Putin who won re-election over the weekend.
The Serbian leader campaigned on promises to balance the country’s bid for European Union (EU) membership with its ties with allies Russia and China, according to Reuters.
Serbia is very dependent on Russian oil and gas products and has an alliance with Russian military forces as well, Reuters reported.
“We will maintain policy that is important for the Europeans, Russians and Americans, and that is … military neutrality,” Vucic said.
“Serbia will try to preserve friendly and partnership relations in many areas with the Russian Federation,” he added.
This comes as Zdravko Ponos, a retired army general representing the opposition coalition, accused Vucic of using Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as a campaign ploy.
According to polling data, turnout for the election stood at 58.54 percent.