Ex-prosecutor Yoon elected South Korean President

SOUTH KOREA: Yoon Suk Yeol, a conservative former top prosecutor and foreign policy neophyte, was elected South Korea’s new President on Thursday in one of the most closely fought races in recent history which will shape Asia’s fourth-largest economy for the next five years.

With over 99% of the votes counted early Thursday, Yoon from the main opposition People Power Party had 48.6% against ruling liberal Democratic Party candidate Lee Jae-myung’s 47.8%.

Yoon said he would honour the Constitution and Parliament and work with opposition parties to heal polarised politics and foster unity, calling the election a “victory of the great people”.

At a separate ceremony with supporters, Yoon said he would put top priority on “national unity,” adding all people should be treated equally regardless of their regional, political and socioeconomic differences.

Yoon’s victory means a remarkable turnaround for the conservatives, which had been struggling to regroup since the 2017 snap election was held after the impeachment and ouster of then President Park Geun-hye.

Yoon has pledged to stamp out graft, foster justice and create a more level playing field, while seeking a “reset” with China and a tougher stance towards reclusive North Korea.

More than 77 per cent of South Korea’s 44 million eligible voters cast ballots to pick their next leader, despite an unprecedented surge in new COVID-19 cases – with a record 342,446 posted on Wednesday. – INDIA TODAY- INDIA TODAY

by Daily News Sri Lanka

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