Kosovo votes in local elections, focus on the Pristina race

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Kosovo holds municipal elections, with the Left Party aiming to capture the town hall in the capital Pristina

About 1.9 million voters vote to elect mayors for 38 municipalities and about 1,000 town hall legislators. Preliminary results are expected at midnight. In previous polls, many of the municipalities have gone to runoff, which takes place in a month.

Voting in the north, populated mainly by the ethnic Serb minority, will attract a great deal of attention after two incidents in the last two months that have led to rising tensions between Kosovo and Serbia.

Earlier this week, Kosovo police clashed with ethnic Serbs during an anti-smuggling operation, and last month the issue of vehicle registration plates was resolved only after mediation by the European Union and the United States. The NATO-led Kosovo force, or KFOR, sent troops to the border area and ended the shit.

Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in 2008 but Serbia does not recognize the move.

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