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Ex-PM Borut Pahor Wins Slovenian Presidential Election

A Slovenian couple votes during the second round of presidential elections at a polling station in Planina, December 2, 2012.

Left-wing former Prime Minister Borut Pahor has won Slovenia's presidential election by a landslide.

Official results give Pahor 67 percent of the vote in Sunday's second round election, to incumbent President Danilo Turk's 33 percent. Pahor also won the first round on November 11.

He called his win a time of new hope and he urged all Slovenians to show trust, respect and tolerance for one another.

The Slovenian presidency is a largely ceremonial job.

Slovenia emerged from the breakup of Yugoslavia peaceful and prosperous, compared to the other former republics. But the Slovenian economy, which depends on revenue from exports, has soured since the 2008 global recession. The country is struggling to avoid asking for a bailout.

The conservative-led government has cut many social benefits along with salaries for government workers, in order to shrink the budget deficit.

A large protest against budget cuts last week turned violent with at least 15 people hurt.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.