Moldova’s Central Election Commission?(CEC)?announced early Monday that?the?opposition leader?won more votes than?the?incumbent president?in the presidential election, but not enough to avoid a run-off.?
The?CEC said that with almost all?ballots counted, former Prime Minister?Maia Sandu?had 36.10%?of the?vote, while President?Igor Dodon?had?32.66%.?
The second round of voting?is scheduled for November 15.?
Sandu ran for Moldova’s top job?on?a pro-European political platform against a president?who had?promised?to keep close?ties?with?Moscow.
Dodon who was the economy minister?under a Communist government between 2006 and 2009, had also said that the?Russian language should become?mandatory?in schools?in Moldova.?
Moldova, a former Soviet republic until 1991, with a small population of little more than 3.5 million people, has long been?divided between those?who promote strong?ties with the European Union and those who favor close relations with Moscow.?
Situated between Ukraine and Romania, the country’s?main language is?Romanian,?and?its?culture heritage is closely linked with that of?Romania.?