The Czech Republic has been voting in a general election that is expected to lead to lengthy coalition talks.
Polls predict a close result at the end of the
two-day election. At stake is how to handle the country’s budget which has been thrown into deeper deficit by the economic crisis.
The leftist party is leading opinion polls but looks set to fall short of the majority it needs. That could lead to a hung parliament and months of political wrangling.
The main opposition party, the right wing Civic Democrats say they are willing and able to make the tough cuts needed to reverse the country’s fortunes. However, corruption fears have turned many people away from both of the two main established parties.
The new cabinet will replace the current interim government which has been in power since a centre right administration led by the Civic Democrats collapsed in March 2009.
A result is expected soon after polls close on Saturday afternoon.