Serbia to hold Belgrade, local elections in June

Serbia to hold Belgrade, local elections in June

Serbia needs as much internal stability as possible, says Parliament Speaker Ana Brnabic

By Talha Ozturk

BELGRADE, Serbia (AA) - Serbian Parliament Speaker Ana Brnabic announced Thursday that local elections across the country will be held alongside Belgrade mayoral elections on June 2.

Brnabic said the decision will require an amendment to the Law on Local Elections and she expects to call for elections on April 21.

"The situation in which our country finds itself is extremely difficult. The pressures are daily, diverse and continuous. In such conditions, we need as much internal stability as possible. If the circumstances in which Serbia finds itself were different, I believe that my decision would have been different." Brnabic said at a news conference.

She said talks with the opposition about holding elections again lasted 17 days.

She previously said that to combine the Belgrade elections and other local elections was unconstitutional and unacceptable., following a request of the opposition coalition, Serbia Against Violence (SPN).

Brnabic said that, after a consultation with President Aleksandar Vucic, they decided to accept the request of the opposition assembled around the SPN and the National Democratic Alternative (NADA) coalition and call for elections that were to be held in July and August.

The Belgrade elections were called again because no list won a majority to form the government in Belgrade after a vote in December.

SPN and NADA accused the ruling coalition, led by the Serbian Progressive Party (SNS), of election theft.

Authorities have repeatedly denied that there were serious electoral irregularities.

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