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Sweden's election marred by irregularities

STOCKHOLM, Sweden, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- Voting irregularities in Sweden's parliamentary elections could affect closely contested races, officials said.

About 6 million people voted, and a preliminary vote count showed the Alliance party 297 votes shy of a majority, Swedish news agency TT reported Thursday.

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Irregularities ranged from ballot envelopes improperly or incompletely sealed, to marked ballots not being delivered in time for counting, the report said.

An election official said some of the irregularities are minor and should not cause a ballot to go uncounted.

"For example, one of the reasons was that the ballot envelope wasn't fully sealed, and I don't think that's sufficient reason to disqualify a ballot," said election official Gith Nilsson. "Certain reasons are certainly correct there are a number which give me pause."

She said if voting irregularities are deemed substantial, a new could be held.

"There's a possibility to contest the results, but then one has to turn to the Election Review Board," Nilsson said.

The election board can call for a new election if it finds mistakes were made that affect its outcome, the report said.

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