Opposition Leading Lithuanian Elections

Posted October 14th, 2012 at 4:20 pm (UTC-5)
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Lithuania's left-wing opposition has taken the lead in Sunday's parliamentary elections.

Exit polls show the left-wing Labor Party in first place, receiving nearly 20 percent of the vote while their likely coalition partners the center-left Social Democrats were in second with 18 percent.

Meanwhile the conservative Homeland Union, led by Prime Minister Andrius Kubillius, was in third place with almost 17 percent, while its coalition partner, the Liberal Movement, was fourth with over 8 percent.

Lithuania's conservative government has been burdened by high unemployment figures and unpopular austerity measures.

Lithuanians also voted on a non-binding referendum on whether the country should build a new nuclear plant.

Analysts say an anti-nuclear campaign is expected to succeed.

Since Lithuania closed its old Chernobyl style nuclear plant three years ago, the country has paid hefty prices for imported natural gas from Russia.