Anti-corruption candidate Zuzana Caputova has gained Slovakia’s presidential election, making her the nation’s first feminine head of state.
Ms Caputova, who has nearly no political expertise, defeated high-profile diplomat Maros Sefcovic, nominated by the governing social gathering, in a second spherical run-off vote on Saturday.
She framed the election as a battle between good and evil.
The election follows the homicide of an investigative journalist final yr.
Jan Kuciak was wanting into hyperlinks between politicians and organised crime when he was shot at house alongside his fiancée in February 2018.
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Ms Caputova cited Mr Kuciak’s homicide as one of many causes she determined to run for president, which is a largely ceremonial position.
She gained 58% of the vote, with Mr Sefcovic trailing on 42%.
Her opponent was nominated by the ruling Smer-SD social gathering, which is led by Robert Fico, who was pressured to resign as prime minister following the killings.
Ms Caputova gained nationwide prominence as a lawyer when she led a case in opposition to an unlawful landfill lasting 14 years.
Aged 45, a divorcee and mom of two, she is a member of the liberal Progressive Slovakia social gathering, which has no seats in parliament.
In a rustic the place same-sex marriage and adoption shouldn’t be but authorized, her liberal views have seen her promote LGBTQ+ rights.
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By Rob Cameron in Bratislava
Saturday evening did really feel like a second. Addressing crowds of supporters in her impromptu election HQ at Bratislava’s Habsburg-era indoor market, Zuzana Caputova quietly extolled values that now appear to come back from a bygone political age: compassion, tolerance, reality.
However whereas liberals rejoice at what they see as proof the tide of populism in Central Europe will be turned, some urge warning.
One analyst mentioned darkly inside hours of her election: “Anticipate Fico to launch a marketing campaign in opposition to her immediately, earlier than June’s inauguration.”
He added that parliament would search to stymie her liberal agenda even earlier than she took workplace, for instance by passing laws to make same-sex marriage troublesome if not unattainable.
However, he mentioned, her enchantment to voters remained robust.
“Viktor Orban [the Hungarian PM] attacked her onerous from Budapest,” he mentioned. “However I am listening to most ethnic Hungarians [10% of Slovakia’s population] voted for her anyway.”
Within the first spherical, Ms Caputova gained 40% of the vote, with Mr Sefcovic gaining lower than 19%.
A number of heads of state – together with these of neighbouring Austria and Ukraine – have expressed their assist for Ms Caputova on social media.
Skip Twitter put up by @vanderbellen
My warmest congratulations to Zuzana #Čaputová, President-elect of #Slovakia, on the spectacular success within the presidential election in Austria’s neighbouring nation. Wishing her all the very best and success for every thing that lies forward. (vdb)
— A. Van der Bellen (@vanderbellen) March 31, 2019
She can be sworn in on 15 June when Slovakia’s present president, Andrej Kiska, finishes his time period of workplace.