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Lithuanian Opposition Expected To Win Runoff


The ruling Social Democrats of Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius finished in third with just 14.4 percent of the first-round vote.

Lithuania’s opposition is expected to win the second round of parliamentary elections.

Official results due later on October 23 were expected to hand victory to either the conservative Homeland Union or the centrist Lithuanian Peasants and Green Union party.

No exit polls were issued after the close of voting at 8 p.m. local time. Lithuania's election commission said turnout was at 38 percent of the 2.5 million eligible voters.

Both main opposition parties scored just over 21 percent of the vote in the first round of the election on October 9, while Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius's Social Democrats came in third with just 14.4 percent.

Three small political parties were also in the race on October 23 -- setting up a scenario for complicated coalition talks in the days ahead.

The ruling government has been hit by a number of corruption scandals in recent months and has faced criticism for a slowing economy and low wages.

Out of 141 seats in parliament, 68 were contested in the second-round vote.

Based on reporting by AFP, dpa, and AP