7 March 2005 -- Moldova's Communist Party is headed for victory in parliamentary elections held yesterday.
With 60 percent of the vote counted, the ruling Party of Moldovan Communists led by President Vladimir Voronin had about 47 percent of the vote. The Communists are projected to win 57 seats, enough to form a government, but four short of the minimum 61 parliamentary seats needed to choose the president.
The centrist Democratic Moldova Bloc has about 28 percent of the vote so far, and the center-right Popular Party Christian Democratic has about 8 percent.
Voronin has promised to integrate Moldova -- one of Europe's poorest countries -- with the European Union. Three years ago, Voronin took a more pro-Moscow stance. But relations with Moscow have cooled, in part because of a disagreement over the presence of Russian troops in the separatist region on Transdniester.
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