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Argentina's First Lady Wins Presidential Election


Argentina Election: Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has become the first female elected to Argentina's presidency, as results from Sunday's ballot showed her crushing all 13 of her opponents.
With over two-thirds of the votes counted today (Monday), Ms. Fernandez had captured 43 percent of the vote. Her nearest challengers in the race, former Economy Minister Roberto Lavagna and former lawmaker Elisa Carrio have both conceded defeat.
In a speech in Buenos Aires on Sunday, Ms. Fernandez declared her victory the widest of any presidential candidate since Argentina's restoration to democratic rule more than two decades ago.
She called on the public to help create a new society and new image for Argentina.
Ms. Fernandez has pledged to continue her husband's policies, which revived Argentina's economy after its collapse in 2001.

Newsmaker: Fernandez: Argentina has elected a woman to the post of president for the first time in its history, and no one is more aware of the major change this represents for Argentine politics than the president-elect herself, Christina Fernandez de Kirchner.
Speaking to a crowd after Sunday's ballot and victory, Ms. Fernandez not only noted her responsibility as a new leader, but also what she called a tremendous responsibility to her "gender."
She is not the first woman to serve as president in Argentina. More than 50 years ago, Latin America's most famous female political figure, Evita Peron (wife of two-time President Juan Peron), took up the reigns of power after her husband died.
Many say the 54-year-old fashion conscious first lady reminds them of Evita. Others mention U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton (the wife of former President Bill Clinton) because like Ms. Clinton, Ms. Fernandez is a senator and lawyer.
Ms. Fernandez is expected to continue her husband's policies after the two trade places in December and political analysts say he will be a close advisor in her presidency.

Iraq: Iraqi officials say a suicide bomber has blown himself up at a police base in the city of Baquba, killing at least 22 people and wounding about 15.
The bomber struck this (Monday) morning as police recruits gathered for a training session at the base, north of Baghdad.
Baquba is the capital of Iraq's Diyala province, where Sunni tribesmen and Islamist militants have joined U.S. and Iraqi forces in fighting al-Qaida in recent months.
In another development, U.S. forces are handing over security responsibility for the mostly Shi'ite province of Karbala to Iraqi authorities today (Monday).
Karbala is the eighth of Iraq's 18 provinces to come under Iraqi security control. U.S. troops will step in if Iraq asks for help.

Turkey – Kurds – Iraq: Turkish state media say government troops have surrounded about 100 Kurdish rebels in a mountainous region near the border with Iraq.
The official Anatolia news agency said today (Monday) Turkish forces trapped the rebels in the southeastern province of Hakkari by blocking their escape routes to bases in northern Iraq.
Turkey's foreign minister has said all options remain open in the fight against Kurdish rebels and terrorists based in northern Iraq.
In another development, officials say a Turkish soldier was killed today by a rebel landmine in the eastern province of Tunceli, far north of the Iraqi border.
Turkey's military also says its forces killed 15 rebels from the Kurdistan Workers' Party during fighting in Tunceli Sunday.

Somalia PM Resigns: Somali officials say Prime Minister Ali Mohamed Gedi has submitted a letter of resignation following a long-running dispute with President Abdullahi Yusuf.
The officials say Mr. Gedi handed the letter to Mr. Yusuf today (Monday) in Baidoa, a town that houses Somalia's parliament. The officials say Mr. Gedi also will appear in parliament today to make a resignation speech.
Mr. Gedi became prime minister of Somalia's transitional government in late 2004. His relationship with President Yusuf has been tense. They belong to rival Somali clans.
Mr. Yusuf had called on parliament to remove Mr. Gedi from office. The president has accused Mr. Gedi of failing to end the Islamist-led insurgency in the capital, Mogadishu, and failing to draft a new constitution.

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