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Milos Zeman leads in Czech presidential vote to replace Euro-skeptic Vaclav Klaus

  • 16309d1507b09e03270f6a706700be59.jpg

    Presidential candidate Milos Zeman smiles after casting his vote during second round of Presidential elections in Prague, Czech Republic, Friday, Jan. 25, 2013. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)The Associated Press

  • 6fbd3d0607b29f03270f6a7067006864.jpg

    Presidential candidate Milos Zeman, is surrounded by media,as he leaves the polling station after casting his vote during second round of Presidential elections in Prague, Czech Republic, Friday, Jan. 25, 2013. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)The Associated Press

Left-leaning former Prime Minister Milos Zeman is leading in the race for the largely ceremonial post of Czech president.

With the votes from more than 50 percent of polling stations counted Saturday, the outspoken Zeman was leading with 57.62 percent of the vote while his opponent, conservative Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg received 42.37 percent.

Czechs are electing the country's president in a direct popular vote for the first time, choosing a leader to replace euro-skeptic President Vaclav Klaus.

Zeman and Schwarzenberg, a bow-tie wearing aristocrat, are facing each other in a runoff after finishing as the top two candidates in the first round two weeks ago.

Klaus' second and final term in office ends March 7. The new president will be sworn in the following day.