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Published: Tuesday March 25, 2014 MYT 6:30:31 PM
Updated: Tuesday March 25, 2014 MYT 6:32:06 PM

Serbia's Progressives win nearly half March 16 votes - official result

BELGRADE (Reuters) - The Serbian Progressive Party has won 48.4 percent of the votes in the March 16 snap election and will be able to form the next government alone, final official results showed.

Confirming a landslide victory unprecedented since the Balkan country came out of international isolation in 2000, the state election commission said late on Monday that the Progressives would have 158 seats in the 250-seat parliament.

The victory also bolsters the position of party leader, Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic - a nationalist in the 1990s who started pursuing EU membership in 2008 and has pledged to reform Serbia's public sector, pension system and labour law.

The Socialist Party of outgoing Prime Minister Ivica Dacic came in second with 13.5 percent of the votes or 44 seats in parliament. Opposition Democratic Party and New Democratic Party took 19 and 18 seats, respectively.

The first parliament session will be on April 17, Belgrade daily Vecernje Novosti reported, quoting unnamed sources.

A parlimentary spokeswoman said no date had been fixed.

(Reporting by Ivana Sekularac; Editing by Zoran Radosavljevic and Louise Ireland)

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