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DEMOCRATIC PARTY HEADS FOR LANDSLIDE WIN IN ALBANIA

Boosted by the bitter discontent of impoverished Albanians, the opposition Democratic Party appeared headed Monday for a landslide election victory over the former Communists, initial returns showed.

The strong Democratic showing in Sunday's nationwide balloting represented a firm public rejection of the party whose leaders for decades forced Albanians to live under Stalinist oppression and in international isolation.With 30 percent of the ballots counted, the Democrats were sweeping 69.2 percent of the vote, the Election Commission said. Such a result nationwide would give them a comfortable two-thirds majority in the new parliament, and the ability to enact constitutionalreform.