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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 January 2008, 11:33 GMT
Georgia confirms Saakashvili win
Mikhail Saakashvili at a rally in Tbilisi, Georgia, on 4 January, 2008
Mr Saakashvili hopes to re-establish his democratic credentials
Official results have confirmed Mikhail Saakashvili's victory in presidential elections in Georgia last week.

The Central Election Commission said Mr Saakashvili, who called the snap poll after civil unrest, won 52% of the vote, averting the need for a run-off.

His nearest rival, Levan Gachechiladze, won 25% of the vote.

Opposition parties say the vote was rigged and they will not accept the result. They have threatened to stage a massive protest on Sunday.

Mr Saakashvili's victory had initially been announced on Sunday, based on a preliminary count.

Accusations

International observers have said the vote was essentially democratic.

Opposition protesters in Georgia 06/01/08

However Mr Gachechiladze, Mr Saakashvili's main rival, stormed into the offices of the Central Election Commission on Tuesday and accused its chairman, Levan Tarkhnishvili, of fraud.

Mr Gachechiladze's key ally, Salome Zurabishvili, said that if there was no second round, by Sunday "the whole of Georgia will be out on the streets".

Mr Saakashvili, a US-educated lawyer, swept to power after street protests in 2003, dubbed the "Rose Revolution".

He called the snap election in an attempt to prove his democratic credentials after huge opposition protests were suppressed last November.

SEE ALSO
Georgian president 're-elected'
07 Jan 08 |  Europe
Monitors hail Georgian election
06 Jan 08 |  Europe
Q&A: Georgian election
06 Jan 08 |  Europe
Profile: Mikhail Saakashvili
06 Jan 08 |  Europe



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