In Montenegro, pollster CEMI forecast that the pro-Western Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS) of President Milo Djukanovic is narrowly ahead of the pro-Serbian and pro-Russian alliance For the Future of Montenegro after Sunday’s parliamentary election.
As neither of the two main political parties will secure the necessary simple majority of 41 deputies in the 81-seat parliament to govern alone, they each will need to seek the support of smaller parties in hopes of forming a coalition government.
Speaking to supporters, Djukanovic said the DPS remains the strongest party in the parliament.
“Such a result means that the Democratic Party of Socialists is the strongest party in Montenegro and in these elections (supporters cheering and applauding) – not only in terms of votes, but also in terms of the mandates,” he said.
Djukanovic said the DPS is waiting for the official results and will “unconditionally comply” with the outcome.
Meanwhile, the leader of For the Future of Montenegro alliance, Zdravko Krivokapic, claimed victory.
“People of Montenegro, freedom has happened!” Krivokapic said. “Good things come to those who wait. After 31 years of an absolute power, this had to happen.
The state election commission is expected to announce the results of Sunday’s parliamentary elections in the coming days.
Montenegro, under the DPS and Djukanovic, broke with Serbia and Russia to join NATO in 2017 after declaring independence from Serbia in 2006.
Internally, DPS and Djukanovic, have faced accusations of an autocratic rule, as well as of widespread graft and criminal links.