Cyprus elections: Nicos Anastasiades, center-right candidate, wins


President of the Democratic Rally of Cyprus (DISY) and presidential candidate Nicos Anastasiades is pictured before giving a speech during a campaign meeting on February 7, 2013 in Nicosia. The first round of Cyprus' presidential election took place on February 17.


Alex Mita

Center-right candidate Nicos Anastasiades was elected president of Cyprus in a runoff election Sunday.

Anastasiades, who was scheduled to speak later Sunday, won a comfortable 57.5 percent of the vote versus 42.5 percent for communist-backed Stavros Malas, Agence France-Presse reported.

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It was one of the widest margins of victory in 30 years, according to The Associated Press.

The two candidates had to enter a runoff election after Anastasiades failed to secure at least 50 percent plus one vote from ballots cast in the regular election last weekend.

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The victory comes at a critical time for Cyprus, which is on the brink of banktuptcy.

Anastasiades favours a quick deal with foreign lenders to finalize a bailout of the Cypriot economy, according to BBC News.

Salas also supported a bailout, but opposed austerity measures.

"Everything is at stake, like it has never been before," Kyriakos Iacovides, publisher of the Cyprus Mail newspaper, told Reuters last weekend. "The country must be rebuilt, Cyprus must be rehabilitated in the EU. We need a strong leadership to rebuild the country."