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Serbia: Djindjic Elected Mayor of Belgrade

Belgrade, February 21 1997 (RFE/RL) -- Opposition leader Zoran Djindjic was elected mayor of Belgrade today, to head the Serbian and Yugoslav capital's first non-Communist government in 52 years.

The vote, by secret ballot, was 68 for and 24 against. Djindjic is a 44-year-old German-educated philosophy scholar.

The Zajedno (Together) opposition coalition took office today three months after it was elected -- and then saw its annulled victories spark daily street protests that eventually swept it into office.

The Belgrade city government's session today was disrupted by hard-line nationalist leader Vojislav Seselj, a staunch enemy of Djindjic, who called the new mayor a "convicted thief" and a "foreign spy." Seselj was removed from the podium.

Djindjic said that the battle against Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic will continue with opposition attempts to gain control over powerful Serbian media, especially state television.