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Vote Count Over: Zurabishvili 38.64%, Vashadze 37.74%

Vote count is over at all polling stations for Georgia’s last direct presidential elections.

According to the returns from 3,705 precincts, the ruling party-endorsed candidate Salome Zurabishvili and the UNM-led coalition’s Grigol Vashadze garnered 38.64% (615,624) and 37.74% (601,188) of votes, respectively.

When no candidate garners more than half of the votes, a runoff has to be held between top two contenders two weeks after the Central Election Commission (CEC) publishes the final vote tally of the first round.

The CEC has maximum 20 days after the Election Day to issue the final vote tally, which places the latest possible date of the runoff on December 1, 2018.

Davit Bakradze of the European Georgia, who finished third with 10.97% according to the preliminary results, already threw his weight behind Vashadze.

Labor Party’s Shalva Natelashvili comes fourth with 3.74% of votes. Free Democrats/Development Movement’s Davit Usupashvili and New Political center-Girchi’s Zurab Japaridze garnered 2.26% each, followed by Free Georgia’s Kakha Kukava with 1.33%. Other presidential candidates received less then 1%.

1,637,956 voters cast ballot in the elections, accounting for 46.74% of the total number of voters, according to the CEC.

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