New Polish President Kaczynski: "mission accomplished"

Staunchly Catholic Conservative Lech Kaczynski was set to become Poland's next president, according to partial results, which bucked pre-vote surveys that had consistently put his liberal rival Donald Tusk in the lead. Kaczynski, of the Law and Justice (PiS) party, garnered 55.44 pct of Sunday's run-off vote, results released by the election commission based on 60.19 percent of the votes counted showed, with Tusk of the Civic Platform (PO) more than 10 percentage points behind on 44.56 pct.

"Mr Chairman, mission accomplished," Kaczynski said at PiS's election evening in central Warsaw, addressing his identical twin Jaroslaw, who heads PiS, and who last month refused the post of prime minister so as not to jeopardise his brother's chances of being elected president, the AP reports.

The results largely confirmed exit polls released by two major television stations immediately after the last polling station closed at 8:25 pm (1825 GMT), which gave Kaczynski nearly 53 pct of the vote, with Tusk on around 47 pct.

Turnout was at 50.49 pct, up on the first round when it was less than 50 pct.

The official result is expected this afternoon.