End of communist rule in Moldova?

Initial results in Moldova's parliamentary election suggest the Communist party could lose its majority, if the opposition manages to form a coalition.

With 98 per cent of ballots counted, the Communists have 45.1 per cent and the opposition parties 51 per cent.

The votes among the opposition parties at the moment are distributed as follows: Liberal Democratic Party – 16.4 per cent (17 seats in parliament), Liberal Party – 14.4 per cent (15 seats), Democratic Party – 12.6 per cent (13 seats), Our Moldova Alliance – 7.4 per cent (8 seats).

The remaining three parties have failed to clear the 5-per-cent election barrier.

The final election results will be summarized later, when the country’s Central Election Commission gets ballots from all stations.

"I think that they will hardly change the situation. Maybe somebody will get or lose one seat," the CEC head Eugen Shtirbu told Itar-Tass.

The current Communist President said the election had been "civilized and democratic."

The four coalition parties, which on current numbers will make it to parliament, have already started coalition talks.

All-in-all, they will get 53 seats, although these would only be enough to form the parliament’s governing body. According to the country’s constitution, they need 61 seats to elect a new president. This measure is due to find a replacement for the incumbent one, Vladimir Voronin, who is now finishing his last term in office. Also, the country’s main law says it’s the president who appoints the prime minister. Thus, the possible ruling coalition won’t be able to form a new government.

Meanwhile, President Voronin says the communists will also try to form a broader coalition.

“Our country needs it (the coalition) to arrange everything back to order and put an end to the rivalry which has been going on for almost the last six months,” he said.

In April, the country was torn apart by protests after allegations the previous poll was rigged.