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Athens, Thessaloniki changing mayors in local government runoff

Athens and Thessaloniki voted to change mayors during Sunday’s runoff local government elections in Greece, with candidates backed by the ruling Conservatives losing to independents or candidates supported by opposition parties. In Athens, incumbent Kostas Bakoyannis (44%) lost to Haris Doukas (56%), with 99% of votes counted.

In Thessaloniki, Stelios Angeloudis led with 67.34% against the incumbent Konstantinos Zervas (32.96%), and 98% of votes counted.

In the third largest municipality of the country, Patras, incumbent Kostas Peletidis, backed by the Communist Party, won a third term, with 98.5% of votes counted, receiving 56.70% over his opponent Konstantinos Svolis (43.30%).

Outgoing Athens mayor Kostas Bakoyannis congratulated the new mayor of Greece’s capital after the majority of the votes were counted.

Bakoyannis said he had spoken with Doukas to “congratulate him on his great victory and to thank him for a very good, substantial electoral campaign we had and, obviously, to assure him that my team and I are at his absolute discretion to organize a cohesive and serious transition.”

After thanking his team, the outgoing mayor said the electoral result was his responsibility alone. He also thanked Athenians “for giving me the opportunity of a lifetime and for allowing me to serve you. I leave City Hall with my head held high, as I entered it.”