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A European future?

Article published on the 2008-05-12 Latest update 2008-05-13 09:10 TU

(Photo: Commission européenne)

(Photo: Commission européenne)

The first results out of Serbia's snap general elections give a win to pro-European parties led by President Boris Tadic's Democratic Party (DS). Without a clear majority, around 39 per cent of votes, Tadic and friends will most likely have to form a coalition. But they are in any case looking forward to teaming up with the EU.

The election was dominated by the issue of Serbian ties with the European Union.

The election was called after the fall of nationalist prime minister Vojislav Kostunica in a row over EU ties. Ethnic-Albanian majority Kosovo declared its' independence in February 2008.

Most EU members have recognised Kosovo, despite Belgrade's staunch opposition.

The Slovenian presidency of the European Union has already hailed what it called "a clear victory" by pro-European forces.

"Serbia has clearly opted for Europe," said French foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner, and junior minister of European Affairs, Jean-Pierre Jouye after they learned the first results.

France, which will hold the rotating presidency of the European Union for six months from 1 July 2008, and Kouchner added, "we are going to work towards giving substance to Serbia's European prospects... the Serbs know they can count on Europe and France."