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News

Challenger takes first round of Slovenia vote

Exit polls show ex-premier Borut Pahor scoring a surprise winning margin in the first round in Slovenia's presidential election. Incumbent President Danilo Türk trails ahead of the runoff on December 2.

Pahor, a Social Democrat, won about 43 percent of the votes and President Danilo Türk, an independent, received 37 percent, according to the survey conducted for state television. A clear win for Türk had initially been predicted in both the first and second rounds by pollsters.

"The message of these elections is that together we can achieve everything," Pahor (photo above) said, admitting his own surprise at the result and urging compatriots to support reforms aimed at reviving the economy.

The conservative ruling Democratic Party's runner Milan Zver was third, with just over 20 percent.

A presidential election in Slovenia can only be decided if a candidate wins more than 50 percent of the vote. The runoff will be held December 2.

mkg/ipj (dpa, AP)