Conservative wins Cyprus presidency

By REUTERS
February 24, 2013 22:09

 
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NICOSIA - 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.

Eight months of inconclusive talks on a bailout package have turned tiny Cyprus into a big headache for the euro zone, triggering fears the island could plunge into a financial meltdown that reignites the bloc's debt crisis.

Anastasiades, who immediately pledged to hammer out a quick deal with foreign lenders and bring Cyprus closer to Europe, took 57.5 percent of the vote, 15 points ahead of his Communist-backed rival Stavros Malas, who campaigned against austerity

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