GREECE

Socialists claim landslide victory in snap election

Socialist leader George Papandreou formally declared victory in Sunday's snap election after his socialist Pasok party won over 43 percent of the vote according to results from nearly two thirds of polling stations.

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AFP - Greek socialist leader George Papandreou declared victory in Sunday's general election in which his party trounced the ruling conservatives of outgoing Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis.

"We stand here united before the great responsibility which we undertake, which I undertake," Papandreou told supporters from a special stand in front of the party's Athens headquarters.

The 57-year-old leader said his party had waged "a good fight to bring back hope and smile on Greeks' faces... to change the country's course into one of law, justice, solidarity, green development and progress."


Bouncing back from a demoralising defeat in 2007, the Pasok socialists won over 43 percent of the vote and look set to capture a 159-seat majority in the 300-deputy parliament according to results from nearly two thirds of polling stations.

In contrast, Karamanlis' conservatives produced one of their worst electoral results in their 35-year-history and the outgoing Prime Minister resigned his party leadership on Sunday.

New Democracy looks set to win around 35 percent of the vote and 94 seats.

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