In the Cypriot presidential elections this weekend, current President Tassos Papadopoulos has been eliminated for a three-horse race. Papadopoulos, who has been rather intransigent on reunification talks and torpedoed the Annan Plan, was regarded as the most hard-line of the three candidates running. This is a little surprising insofar as Papadopoulos had shown a modest lead in all the opinion polls. However, the final results were:
Ioannis Casoulides (Democratic Rally), 33.5%
Demetris Christophias (AKEL), 33.3%
Tassos Papadopoulos (Democratic Party), 31.8%
Casoulides is the candidate of the conservative Democratic Rally of former president Glafcos Clerides, who endorsed the Annan Plan for reunification. He is generally seen as the most capable of reaching a negotiated solution. The second round will be held in one week, on February 24.