Friday, May 29, 2015Friday, May 29, 2015

Cypriot conservative romps to presidential victory

Published on Feb 25, 2013 1:55 AM

NICOSIA (REUTERS) - Cypriot conservative leader Nicos Anastasiades won an overwhelming victory in a presidential run-off election on Sunday, boosting hopes of a swift financial rescue for the near-bankrupt island nation.

Tiny Cyprus has emerged as a big headache for the euro zone in recent months, triggering fears the island may plunge into a financial meltdown that will reignite the bloc's debt crisis. A bailout has proved elusive eight months since talks began.

Mr Anastasiades, who has pledged to hammer out a quick deal with foreign lenders, took 57.5 per cent of the vote, 15 points ahead of his communist-backed rival Stavros Malas, who campaigned on an anti-austerity platform.

Jubilant supporters waved Greek and Cypriot flags, honked car horns and set off flares in Nicosia as the results came in.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!