Kosovo opposition party set to win parliamentary vote: exit poll

By Fatos Bytyci PRISTINA (Reuters) - Kosovo's anti-establishment party Vetevendosje is forecast to win Sunday's parliamentary poll, an exit poll showed, a result which could further complicate Western efforts to resolve its decades-long territorial disputes. The Pipos/Kosova Klan television exit poll showed Vetevendosje was forecast to win 41.8%, while another opposition party Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) is forecast to come second with 16.5% of the votes. The ruling Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) is forecast to come third with 15.2% of the votes.

Reuters February 15, 2021 01:11:28 IST
Kosovo opposition party set to win parliamentary vote: exit poll

Kosovo opposition party set to win parliamentary vote exit poll

By Fatos Bytyci

PRISTINA (Reuters) - Kosovo's anti-establishment party Vetevendosje is forecast to win Sunday's parliamentary poll, an exit poll showed, a result which could further complicate Western efforts to resolve its decades-long territorial disputes.

The Pipos/Kosova Klan television exit poll showed Vetevendosje was forecast to win 41.8%, while another opposition party Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK) is forecast to come second with 16.5% of the votes.

The ruling Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK) is forecast to come third with 15.2% of the votes. The Alliance for the Future of Kosovo (AAK), seen as a potential kingmaker by analysts, is forecast to win 7.2 %,

Vetevendosje leader Albin Kurti, who served as prime minister for five months last year, has won support on pledges to fight widespread corruption and on a stance that there should be no compromise in a dialogue with Serbia, which lost control over Kosovo in 1999 after NATO bombed its forces.

"Kosovo as an independent state, this Sunday, is returning to its people as the source of sovereignty," Kurti told reporters after casting his vote.

"We should vote with love for the country"

According to exit polls Vetevendosje is not likely to secure a majority of 61 seats in parliament and will have to find a coalition partner to form a government.

"There are a lot of challenges ahead of us, we have the issue with Serbia, the pandemic situation and strengthening the state," Ramush Haradinaj, whose AAK is seen as a potential king-maker, said after casting his ballot.

Serbia, backed by Russia, does not recognise Kosovo's independence, citing the need to protect the rights of its Serb minority. Negotiators from the European Union and the United States have failed to secure a compromise to allow Kosovo to join international bodies such as the United Nations and NATO.

With one third of its workforce unemployed and a gross domestic product per capita of $4,300, Kosovo remains the poorest country in the Western Balkan region.

"People want jobs, we want to get rid of corruption," said Luljeta Emini after she cast her ballot in Pristina.

Polling stations were due to close at 7 p.m. (1800 GMT), with the first official results expected a few hours later.

(Reporting by Fatos Bytyci; Writing by Ivana Sekularac; Editing by Mike Harrison, Frances Kerry and Gareth Jones)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

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