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Taiwan elects its first female president; China warns of grave challenges
January 17, 2016, 8:50 am

Taiwan has elected its first female president in a landmark election that could unsettle relations with Beijing.

Tsai Ing-wen, leader of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), won the presidency with 56.1% of the vote after eight years under the government of the pro-China Kuomintang (KMT) or Nationalist Party.

Eric Chu, the Nationalist Party candidate in Taiwan's presidential election conceded defeat late Saturday and congratulated rival Tsai Ing-wen on her victory, the agency added.

Her supporters filled streets, waving party banners and cheering to victory announcements made from a stage.

The election also marked the first time the KMT has lost control of the island's legislature. The DPP took 68 of the 113 seats in Taiwan's parliament compared to the DPP's 35.

At a post-election news conference, Tsai underscored Taiwan's commitment to democracy, calling it a value "deeply engrained in the Taiwanese people."

"Our democratic way of life is forever the resolve of Taiwan's 23 million people," she said.

But later in her speech, she also acknowledged the tenuous relationship with Beijing, saying both sides "have a responsibility to do their utmost to find mutually acceptable ways to interact ... and ensure no provocation and no surprises."

Source: CNN

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