BRUSSELS - A party that wants to split Belgium scored major victories in municipal elections on Sunday and its leader was set to become mayor of the country's second city, raising the pressure on a fragmented national government.

The Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (New Flemish Alliance or N-VA) won the most votes in a vast swathe of districts in the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders, including the port city of Antwerp.

The party's leader Bart De Wever was on course to become the city's mayor after the N-VA were on 36 percent of the vote with 80 percent of the votes counted.

"We are the new people's party of Flanders," De Wever told cheering supporters.

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