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South Koreans vote for new leader


South Koreans headed to voting stations on Tuesday to elect a new leader, with a potential record turnout suggesting voters are eager to move on from a corruption scandal that brought down the former president and shook the political and business elite, APA reported citing Reuters.

 

Unless there is a major upset, liberal Moon Jae-in - who calls for a moderate approach on North Korea, wants to reform powerful family-run conglomerates and boost fiscal spending to create jobs - will be elected president.

 

The vote will end a months-long leadership vacuum. Former president Park Geun-hye was ousted on charges of bribery and abuse of power in March to become South Korea's first democratically elected president to be thrown out of office.

 

The National Election Commission (NEC) said voter turnout was at 59.9 percent by 2 p.m.

 

A Gallup Korea poll last Wednesday showed Moon with 38 percent support in a field of 13 candidates, with centrist Ahn Cheol-soo his nearest challenger on 20 percent.

 

Polls will close at 8 p.m.

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