Americas

Honduras elects democratic socialist as first female president

Honduras has elected Xiomara Castro, a democratic socialist, to be its first female president, Bloomberg News reported.

Castro, a member of the Libre Party, won 53 percent of the vote compared to 34 percent for National Party candidate Nasry Asfura, with just half of the votes tallied as of late Tuesday. 

In a Twitter statement, Castro announced Asfura has conceded from the race and congratulated her on her victory.

"Nasry Asfura Zablah, PN Candidate, accepts the will of the people, recognizes the victory of Libre en Alliance, and my triumph as President-elect of HN. Thanks!" Castro wrote on Twitter.

"People, I will not fail you! With my promises we will return to the democratic order," Castro added. 

Castro pledged to introduce a new welfare payment for poor households and senior citizens, to tax the rich and allow the central bank to lend the treasury in emergencies, Bloomberg reported. 

Castro also wants to align Honduras with the People's Republic of China, which could lead to the end of the country's recognition of Taiwan. 

Honduras is currently one of the 15 countries that have full official diplomatic relations with Taiwan rather than China, Bloomberg reported. 

This comes as crime, poverty and natural disasters have become the main sources for the recent wave of migration to the U.S southern border, as a record 321,000 Hondurans were detained by U.S. officials at the border in the 2021 fiscal year. 

Castro is set to replace President Juan Orlando Hernández, whose term has been plagued with scandals and accusations of ties to organized crime.

Orlando Hernandez's brother, Juan Antonio Hernández, was convicted in 2019 after evidence showed him working with drug traffickers from Mexico and Colombia on turning the country into a major hub for cocaine bound for the U.S.

Antonio Hernández was sentenced to life in prison for his actions, Bloomberg noted.

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