17:21 GMT +315 December 2017
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    Building of the Parliamentary Assembly Council of Europe (PACE) in Strasbourg, France

    PACE Evaluates Moldova's Presidential Elections as Free, Well Organized

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    The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) observers stated that Moldova's presidential elections were free and well organized.

    CHISINAU (Sputnik) Head of the delegation to Moldova Elisabeth Schneider-Schneiter said that the voting in the elections was open and the process itself was well organized.

    On Sunday, the first round of presidential elections was held in Moldova. The candidate needs to gain 50 percent and one vote to win the elections, while two major contenders, Socialist Party's Igor Dodon and Action and Solidarity's Maia Sandu, gained 48.72 and 37.96 percent of votes, respectively.

    The last direct presidential elections were held in Moldova in 1996. Since 2000, the president was elected by parliament, but in March, the constitutional court ruled that Moldova's president should be elected by popular vote for the first time in two decades. Nine candidates were seeking the presidency.

    Related:

    Moldova's Presidential Elections Meet Int'l Law Requirements
    Moldova Presidential Front-Runner Dodon Remains Confident of Runoff Victory
    Moldova Likely to Hold Second Round of Presidential Elections - CEC
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    elections, PACE, Moldova
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