The Albanian Parliament has elected its leader as the country’s new president.

Lawmakers in the 140-seat body voted 87-2 to make Parliament Speaker Ilir Meta president. Meta’s nomination was formally supported by the main left-wing governing Socialist Party of Prime Minister Edi Rama.

There were 89 lawmakers present during the closed-door vote. Meta needed at least 71 votes to be elected.

Meta is leader of the junior governing party, the Socialist Movement for Integration, or LSI. The 48-year-old was the only candidate proposed by 23 lawmakers.

A handover ceremony from President Bujar Nishani is expected in July.

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