Croatia's ruling party on course to win national poll

Croatia's ruling conservative HDZ party looked on course on Monday to win another four years in power and take the nation into the European Union after a close-fought parliamentary election.

Croatia's ruling party on course to win national poll
However, the HDZ did not secure an outright majority forcing it to start looking for coalition partners.

Preliminary election results, based on 95 percent of all votes, gave Prime Minister Ivo Sanader's Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) 61 seats. The Social Democrats (SDP) had 56 seats.

The HDZ can expect five more seats from expatriates, mainly Croats living in Bosnia, thanks to its extensive campaigning in the neighboring country, where the SDP chose not to run.

Sanader, who all but proclaimed a victory on Sunday night, still needs to swing a smaller centrist coalition and the ethnic minorities to win the 153-seat parliament.

SDP leader Zoran Milanovic vowed to do the same and said he was starting coalition talks "immediately."

Agencies

Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Kasım 2007, 15:17
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