Pro-Milosevic bloc wins in coastal town

PODGORICA, Jun 12, 2000 -- (Reuters) An opposition coalition backed by Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic has won the local poll in Montenegro's coastal town of Herzeg Novi, an official from the pro-Western government said on Monday.

The official gave estimated results by telephone from the town, one of two where key local polls were held on Sunday.

He said that based on the 80 percent of the vote counted so far, the coalition would get 19 places in the 35-seat assembly, while the ruling coalition would get 14 seats and the pro-independence Liberal Alliance two.

The Montenegrin ruling coalition, which has edged the republic away from Yugoslavia over the past two years, said earlier that it had won in Podgorica. A coalition official said it had got 29 of the 54 seats there based on votes counted so far.

The figures and numbers of seats could change slightly as the final votes come in. Official results have yet to be released for the polls, which are seen as a test of Montenegrins' appetite for independence.

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