Rul­ing party can­di­date fails to make pres­i­den­tial runoff

The Washington Times Daily - - WORLD -

ULAANBAATAR | The Mon­go­lian rul­ing party’s can­di­date lost in pres­i­den­tial elec­tions to a pop­ulist busi­ness ty­coon and a na­tion­al­ist want­ing the coun­try to ben­e­fit more from its min­eral wealth, pre­lim­i­nary re­sults early Tues­day showed. The elec­tion was headed for a runoff.

The Mon­go­lian Peo­ple’s Party’s Miye­gombo Enkhbold, speaker of the par­lia­ment and a horse dealer, gar­nered only 30 per­cent of about 1.3 mil­lion votes cast Mon­day, ac­cord­ing to the Gen­eral Elec­tion Com­mis­sion.

Busi­ness ty­coon Khalt­maa Bat­tulga of the Demo­cratic Party won 39 per­cent, while na­tion­al­ist Sainkhuu Gan­baatar of the Mon­go­lian Peo­ple’s Rev­o­lu­tion­ary Party, a vo­cal critic of min­ing giant Rio Tinto’s op­er­a­tions in the coun­try, gar­nered 32 per­cent.

While the na­tion of 3 mil­lion had been an oa­sis of demo­cratic sta­bil­ity since the end of com­mu­nist rule nearly three decades ago, its pol­i­tics have grown in­creas­ingly frac­tious amid an eco­nomic cri­sis and ac­cu­sa­tions of cor­rup­tion among the rul­ing class.

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