Europe

The Latest: EU says Vucic must act responsibly after victory

  • Serbian Prime Minister and presidential candidate Aleksandar Vucic, speaks during a press conference after claiming victory in the presidential election, in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, April 2, 2017. Vucic claimed victory Sunday in the presidential election that was a test of his authoritarian rule amid growing Russian influence in the Balkan region. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

    Serbian Prime Minister and presidential candidate Aleksandar Vucic, speaks during a press conference after claiming victory in the presidential election, in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, April 2, 2017. Vucic claimed victory Sunday in the presidential election that was a test of his authoritarian rule amid growing Russian influence in the Balkan region. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)  (The Associated Press)

  • Serbian Prime Minister and presidential candidate Aleksandar Vucic speaks during a press conference after claiming victory in the presidential election, in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, April 2, 2017. Vucic claimed victory Sunday in the presidential election that was a test of his authoritarian rule amid growing Russian influence in the Balkan region. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

    Serbian Prime Minister and presidential candidate Aleksandar Vucic speaks during a press conference after claiming victory in the presidential election, in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, April 2, 2017. Vucic claimed victory Sunday in the presidential election that was a test of his authoritarian rule amid growing Russian influence in the Balkan region. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)  (The Associated Press)

  • Serbian Prime Minister and presidential candidate Aleksandar Vucic, center, celebrates after claiming victory in the presidential election, in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, April 2, 2017. Vucic claimed victory Sunday in the presidential election that was a test of his authoritarian rule amid growing Russian influence in the Balkan region. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

    Serbian Prime Minister and presidential candidate Aleksandar Vucic, center, celebrates after claiming victory in the presidential election, in Belgrade, Serbia, Sunday, April 2, 2017. Vucic claimed victory Sunday in the presidential election that was a test of his authoritarian rule amid growing Russian influence in the Balkan region. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)  (The Associated Press)

The Latest on Serbia's presidential election (all times local):

11:15 a.m.

The European Union official overseeing the bloc's enlargement says Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic has a duty to use his powers wisely after he swept the country's presidential election.

EU Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn said Monday that Vucic has a "certain responsibility" in light of Sunday's polls "to use this strong support by the citizens in a careful way."

Hahn told reporters that he was comforted by Vucic's early assurances that "he will fully respect the constitutional framework, and I trust him."

A near-complete official vote count of Serbia's presidential election has confirmed that Vucic won by a landslide in the first round of voting.

While Vucic has said he wants to lead Serbia into the EU, he has been pushing for deeper ties to longtime ally Russia.

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11 a.m.

A near-complete official vote count of Serbia's presidential election has confirmed that prime minister Aleksandar Vucic has won by a landslide in the first round of voting.

The State Election Commission said Monday after counting 91 percent of ballots that Vucic won 55 percent of votes, followed by liberal candidate Sasa Jankovic with 16 percent, and Luka Maksimovic, a parody politician, with 9 percent.

The triumph at Sunday's balloting presents a major boost for Vucic who is now expected to further tighten his already firm grip on power in Serbia.

A former extreme nationalist who has rebranded himself as pro-EU reformer, Vucic has said he wants to lead the Balkan country into the European Union, while pushing for deeper ties to longtime ally Russia.