China-critical President Tsai Ing-wen will remain Taiwan’s leader for the next four years. On Saturday, she won the presidential election with more than 57 percent of the votes.
She leaves Han Kuo-yu (around 39 percent) and James Soong (over 4 percent) behind. Taiwan has, therefore, voted against closer ties with China.
Han-Kuo-yu, who is more pro-China, has admitted his loss after counting the votes. “I called President Tsai to congratulate her,” he said. “She has a new mandate for the next four years.”
According to the Taiwanese election committee, Tsai Ing-wen received 7.7 million votes, a record. Han Kuo-yu could count on 5.2 million votes.
“In particular, many young people went to the polls on Saturday,” someone from a polling station in the capital of Taipei told South China Morning Post. “The good weather has also contributed to a relatively high turnout.” The precise turnout figure is still unclear.
Presumably many voters have taken the current situation in Hong Kong into account in their vote. Hundreds of thousands of people have been taking to the streets in this special administrative region of China since April last year against the growing influence of China.
When Tsai Ing-wen came to power in 2016, China broke all ties with Taiwan. Many other countries did not follow and recognize the independent state. Taiwanese voters now seem to resist China.
Tsai Ing-wen has since claimed her own victory. She also said that Taiwan will never merge with China as long as it is in power.