Hungary’s pro-Putin prime minister has declared victory in the country’s national elections, demanding a mandate to stay in power for a fourth consecutive term.
According to the National Electoral Office, with just 43% of the vote, the right-wing Prime Minister Victor Urban’s Fidez-led coalition won 57% of the vote, while a pro-European opposition coalition, the United for Hungary, received 31%.
Addressing Fidez party officials and supporters, Mr Urban said: “We have won so much that you can see it from the moon, and you must see it from Brussels.”
Voters were electing lawmakers in the country’s 199-seat parliament, with the race expected to be the closest since Mr Urban took office in 2010.
The country’s six main opposition parties formed a united front against Fidez in a bid to seize power.
The United for Hungary Alliance has called on voters to support a new political culture in the country’s revised alliance with the European Union and NATO allies.
Originally, Mr. Urban based his campaign on divided social and cultural issues, but he changed his message after the start of the war in Ukraine.
Since then, he has portrayed elections as a choice between peace and stability or between war and chaos.
Opposition groups called for a cease-fire in Hungary Ukraine And working step-by-step with the EU and NATO, while Mr Urban insisted that Hungary would remain neutral and maintain its close economic ties with Moscow.
Observation missions have been sent to Hungary for the election
Peter Markey-J, the prime ministerial candidate of the United for Hungary Alliance, has vowed to end allegations of government corruption and raise living standards by raising funds for the country’s ailing healthcare and education systems.
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After the vote, he thanked all Hungarians who had voted and the more than 20,000 volunteer ballot counters that opposition parties had allocated at polling stations across the country.
“I express my gratitude to the civilians who have spent the day testing the cleanliness of the election and are now counting,” Mr Markey-J wrote.
Concerns were raised about the election and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe sent a full monitoring mission to the country – the second time this has happened in an EU country.