Socialists Hold Slight Lead in Spanish poll
Spain's governing Socialists and opposition Popular Party are running almost neck-and-neck in the country's regional and municipal elections.
With almost all votes counted in the town hall poll, the Popular Party has a tiny lead, prompting deputy leader Angel Acebes to declare victory.
Rural results are still coming in, but seem little changed from the 2003 vote.he Socialist party gained power in the wake of the train bombings in 2004. Three years on, locally-focused voters return to the polls.
Spain's ruling Socialists have a slight lead in local and regional elections, partial results indicate.
With 81% of votes counted, they are less than one percentage point ahead of the opposition Popular Party. Both seem set to retain their main strongholds.
National issues - such as violence in the Basque region and urban planning corruption - have loomed strongly.
For the first time, many British and German expatriates have put themselves forward as anti-corruption candidates.
The vote was seen as the first real test of popularity for Spain's Socialist government, which came to power after general elections in March 2004.
That election came three days after train bomb attacks in Madrid that killed 191 people.
The political make-up of more than 8,000 town councils and most of the country's regional governments is being decided in Sunday's polls.
The Socialists retained Seville and Barcelona, while the Popular Party (PP) held onto Madrid and Valencia. But the PP's majority in Navarra was threatened by a surge by Basque nationalists.