Its outgoing president of MontenegroThe Milo Djukanovicaged 61, will confronted in the second round of the presidential elections with the 37-year-old economist friend close to Europe Jacob Milatovichindicated an exit poll from the polling stations after the first round of the process yesterday Sunday.

Mr Djukanovic, the politician who has ruled Montenegro for the past three decades without interruption, either as prime minister or president, was credited with 35% of the vote, compared to 29% for Mr Milatovic, according to the exit poll by the non-governmental organization CeMI , who took over the supervision of the process.

The electoral commission of the small Balkan country is expected to release preliminary official results later today.

The second round will be held on April 2.

The elections were held after months political impasse in the country washed by the Adriatic. Two governments were toppled by no-confidence votes after the 2020 parliamentary elections, the second in August; the current government is simply managing the current attacks.

Outgoing head of state Djukanovic dissolved parliament a few days before the presidential election and announced early parliamentary elections on June 11.

Montenegro, which is negotiating its accession to the European Union, is “paralyzed” in terms of its “European path”, the implementation of reforms in the context of the accession process, the president argued, announcing the date of early parliamentary elections on Friday .

In the country of 620,000 inhabitants, the president has mainly ceremonial duties, it is the prime minister who holds the steering wheel in his hands. But Mr. Djukanovic remains a major figure: he served six terms as prime minister and is now running for his third term as president. A one-time close associate of the one-time Belgrade strongman Slobodan Milosevic, he led his country to the West and secured his country’s divorce from Serbia in 2006.

His opponent, if the exit poll is confirmed, will be 37-year-old Mr Milatovic, economic development minister in the first government formed after the 2020 election. He left a post at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to take up the ministry .

For some populists, he was one of the founders in 2022 of the Europe Now movement, which seems to have wind in its sails.