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Germany

Saxony Elections Boost Far-Right Party

Provisional results from local elections in the eastern German state of Saxony have provided a significant boost for the far-right NPD party, news agency DPA reported.

NPD members participate in a demonstration

The NPD gained some 5.5 percent of the vote

The German National Democratic Party (NPD) is likely to be represented in all local authorities in the state, which borders the Czech Republic and Poland, after it secured around 5.5 percent of the vote in elections held on Sunday, June 8.

After most of the votes had been counted, the largest party was Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) with 39.5 percent of the vote. That means that 123 of the 282 mayors elected are likely to be from the CDU.

The new Left Party, formed last year as the successor to the PDS, which in turn grew out of the communist party that ruled East Germany until reunification in 1990, was second with 18.7 percent.

Independent voter associations were likely to get 12.1 percent, while the Social Democrats (SPD), the main German left-of-centre party, secured 11.5 percent and the liberal free market FDP 8.3 percent.

The NPD is ostracized by all the main parties and there have been attempts to have it banned as unconstitutional. A law outlawing the party was struck down by the Constitutional Court in 2003.

According to initial figures, voter turnout was a relatively low 45.8 percent of the 2.9 million eligible voters, the lowest ever in the state. Final results were expected later on Monday.

Saxony will hold state elections in autumn of next year.

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