South Korea Elects First Woman President

SEOUL, South Korea (CNN) -- Conservative candidate Park Geun-Hye claimed victory Wednesday in South Korea's presidential election, a result that will make her the country's first woman president.
Addressing crowds in Gwanghwamun Square, Park said her win was a victory for the people.
"I will be the president of the nation who keeps pledges," she said.
Her rival, liberal candidate Moon Jae-in, conceded victory, according to South Korean network YTN.
South Korea's outgoing President Lee Myung-bak congratulated Park on her win.
The result has not yet been confirmed by the country's National Election Commission.
But Park was leading with 51.63% of the vote to 47.94% for her rival Moon, with more than 90% of the vote counted, election officials said.
The three major broadcasters in South Korea all projected a win for Park, the 60-year-old who heads the governing conservative Saenuri party.
Voters who headed to the polls amid frigid temperatures faced a choice between a conservative and a liberal candidate to lead the strategic Western ally and fourth largest economy in Asia.
Opinion polls suggested Park, 60, had an edge over the left-leaning candidate of the Democratic United Party going into the vote, held at a time of rising economic anxiety.
She will assume office in February 2013, in a country grappling with income inequality, angst over education and employment prospects for its youth and strained relations with North Korea.


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