Boris Tadic has resigned as Serbian head of state, so that presidential elections can be held in tandem with planned parliamentary elections next month. State media reports that Tadic will run for the office again.
President Boris Tadic announced on Wednesday that he would resign his post, bringing presidential elections into line with Serbian parliamentary elections already scheduled for May 6. Tadic, whose mandate expires in 10 months, said he intends to run for re-election in the ballot.
"I decided to shorten my mandate to allow presidential elections to be held on May 6. I will be a candidate," state television channel RTS quoted Tadic as saying.
Tadic was set to formally submit his resignation to the parliamentary speaker in Belgrade on Thursday.
The Serbian president leads the ruling Democratic Party (DS), which has been losing ground to the opposition Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) in opinion polls. Election observers say Tadic's decision to run simultaneously for the presidency is an attempt to boost the DS party's fortunes in the parliamentary vote.
Tadic's toughest challenger in the presidential ballot is likely to be SNS party leader Tomislav Nikolic.
msh/ipj (AFP, AP, dpa, Reuters)