The conservative Croatian Democratic Union Party could remain in power in Croatia after winning the election, while the pro-Russian Social Democratic Party loses.

The conservative Croatian Democratic Union Party could remain in power in Croatia after winning the election, while the pro-Russian Social Democratic Party loses.

The conservative Croatian Democratic Union party won Wednesday's parliamentary elections in Croatia, but was unable to achieve a majority. This became clear during the night from Wednesday to Thursday, after almost all the votes were counted. The party of current Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic can count on 61 of the 151 seats in Parliament. This is five years lower than it was four years ago. The center-left coalition led by President Zoran Milanovic's Social Democratic Party won 42 seats.

“As of tomorrow morning, we will begin to form a new parliamentary majority to form our third government,” Plenkovic said in his victory speech. “I would like to congratulate the other parties that were defeated by the HDZ.”

Thanks to the gains made by the Croatian Democratic Union, which did not participate in government for only six of the 32 years following the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, Croatia is likely to continue on a Westward-oriented path. The Balkan country is a member of the European Union and NATO.

The Social Democratic Party has warm feelings towards Russia

Continuing in this manner was not self-evident before the elections. The Social Democratic Party, especially President Milanović, regularly spoke out against financial and military aid to Ukraine. He also made no secret of his warm feelings towards Russia.

Despite his defeat on Wednesday, Milanović is considered one of the most popular politicians in Croatia, meaning a change in national policy cannot be ruled out in advance – even though previous opinion polls had already indicated a Croatian Democratic Union victory.

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Milanovic's nomination, regardless of his views on Russia, was not without controversy. Judges ruled last month that as president he could not participate in parliamentary elections at all. The Croatian Constitution stipulates that the presidency, which is a symbolic position, is held by a non-partisan figure.

However, Milanović did not resign from his position as president. It is therefore unclear what his actual chances of becoming prime minister are if he wins.



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