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Taiwan Elects President

Headline: Taiwan Elects Pro-China President

Taiwan has just elected Ma Ying-jeou — a Harvard-educated lawyer and former Taipei mayor — as president. Ma Ying-jeou ran his campaign seeking greater economic ties to China. His opponent warned that the current situation in Tibet is possible in Taiwan if China is given greater authority. But today Ma said he was convinced that Taiwan’s economic survival depended on closer ties to Beijing. He said, “if we don’t get into China’s market, we are locked into our own country."

Also up for vote were two controversial referendums — one regarding Taiwan applying for membership in the United Nations — fell well short of passage. China is strongly opposed to United Nations membership for Taiwan, which it regards as a breakaway province. The United States and China had both denounced the UN referendum as provocative because it specifically called for the island to apply as Taiwan and not use its legal name, the Republic of China.

Well over a majority of the island's citizens got "I Voted" stickers. Voter turnout was 75.7 percent.


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