Taiwan Ruling Party’s Lai Ching-te Wins Presidential Election

Lai Ching-te, the presidential candidate for Taiwan’s ruling party, won the country’s election over the weekend.

Lai’s Democratic Progressive Party, which is in favor of Taiwan’s separate identity and rejects China’s territorial claims, was seeking a third term.

Lai was up against two opponents for the presidency, the KMT’s Hou and former Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je of the small Taiwan People’s Party.

“Every vote is valued, as this is Taiwan’s hard-earned democracy,” Lai said. “I want to thank the Taiwanese people for writing a new chapter in our democracy.”

Prior to the election, China repeatedly denounced Lai as a dangerous separatist and ignored his repeated calls for talks.

According to the Washington Post, “Lai promised to work closely with the United States to boost Taiwan’s defenses at a time when trust between Beijing, Taipei and Washington has frayed and when escalating Chinese military harassment is threatening to tumble into outright conflict.”