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Romania: Mayor Of Bucharest Named Prime Minister

By Lucian Ristea and Ion Lefter

Bucharest, 19 November 1996 (RFE/RL) - Bucharest Mayor Victor Ciorbea was selected prime minister of Romania today. The nomination came shortly after releasing final election results that showed opposition leader Emil Constantinescu had been elected president of the Balkan country.

The 42-year-old Ciorbea was backed by the center-right National Peasants Party, the leading force in the Democratic Convention -- the opposition alliance that supported Constantinescu's candidacy.

A former trade union leader, Ciorbea has gained a reputation of being straight-talking and efficient.

Ciorbea easily defeated former tennis star Ilie Nastase in June local elections to head Romania's capital of 2.3 million people.

He beat four other candidates, including historian Radu Vasile and economist Ulm Spineanu, to be selected prime minister. He is to take office after the new president is sworn in later this month.

Ciorbea replaces Nicolae Vacaroiu, a former tax official from the outgoing ruling Social Democracy Party, who has been prime minister since 1992.

Earlier today, Romania's Central Electoral Bureau announced final results of Sunday's second-round voting for president showing that Constantinescu received 54 percent of the vote to Iliescu's 44 percent.