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Macedonia exit polls point to victory for Ivanof

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Macedonia exit polls point to victory for Ivanof

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Exit polls for the presidential election in Macedonia indicate a victory for Gjorge Ivanof, the frontrunner for the largely ceremonial post.

Votes are now being counted in what has been described as Macedonia’s last chance of a place in the international community. The violence that marred last year’s parliamentary poll aroused fears that Macedonia’s candidacy for EU membership would be further delayed. Ivanov, of Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski’s governing right-wing VMRO-DPMNE party, is said to have a 10-point lead over Ljubomir Frckovski who is backed by the Social Democrat party. Neither of the two leading contenders is expected to gain the absolute majority needed to avoid a run-off vote on April 5. The head of the country’s electoral commission says there have been no official complaints of irregularities.