May 13, 2007, 12:35 GMT
Belgrade - 'Europe on its knees!' screams a headline in the boulevard daily Kurir on Sunday, a day after the Serbian singer Marija Serifovic won the Eurovision Song Contest in Helsinki with her title Molitva (Prayer).
'European prayer for Serbia ,' 'EuroMarija' and 'Marija conquers Europe ' are some of the headlines in other newspapers. Basking her performance on her powerful voice rather than appearance, Serifovic won ahead of Ukraine and Russia .
Reports stress that the win came for Serbia in its first outing as an independent nation - before it competed as a part of the Yugoslav federation. (A year ago Montenegro was the last of the former Yugoslav republics to break with Serbia .)
The outcome of the context in Helsinki was followed by a volley of firecrackers and fireworks in Belgrade . A little later crowds and motorcades gathered downtown in the capital and Serifovic's hometown Kragujevac, 120 kilometres to the south, to celebrate.
For many Serbs the Eurovision contest, carried live on the national TV second channel, and was a welcome alternative from the grim, marathon debate in parliament on the first channel.
The exhausted deputies, who have been meeting amid a political crisis over much of the past week, united in applause when the news of Serifovic's victory broke through shortly after midnight local time.
Vojislav Kostunica directly congratulated the songstress: 'Marija, all honours. The whole of Serbia is happy and proud because of you.' His rival and uneasy partner, President Boris Tadic, sent a telegram an hour later.