Montenegro opposition demands new presidential vote

More than 5,000 opposition supporters protested in the Montenegrin capital Saturday against alleged fraud in an April 7 presidential election, demanding a new poll be called.

The opposition candidate in the presidential vote, Miodrag Lekic, the only challenger to the declared winner, incumbent President Filip Vujanovic, has cried foul over alleged vote-rigging.

Both candidates had claimed victory in the election for the largely ceremonial post. But the electoral commission eventually ruled that Vujanovic won 51.21 percent of votes, while Lekic got support of 48.79 percent.

Montenegro's main opposition groups, which overcame their bickering and backed Lekic, demanded that parliament annul election results and call new presidential polls within 10 days. The demand was later to be officially submitted to the parliamentary speaker and government.

"It does not matter that I will not enter the office of the president. It is much more important that we all together fight for a goal that Montenegro becomes a home of honest people," Lekic told the crowd in Podgorica.

Chanting "we do not give up our victory," protesters carried placards reading "Time for Change" and "Lekic - new president."

The opposition vowed to continue a boycott of the parliament launched a day after the election.

Europe's top security grouping, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, said the election "generally met OSCE commitments".