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El Salvador tribunal confirms ex-rebel's presidential victory

El Salvador's Supreme Electoral Tribunal [official website, in Spanish] on Sunday confirmed the presidential victory of former Marxist rebel Salvador Sanchez Ceren, denying conservative candidate Norman Quijano's call for annulment. Sanchez Ceren received a narrow 50.11 percent of the votes in the run-off election, making him the nation's first ex-rebel to serve as president. Based on the court's findings, Oscar Samuel Ortiz is also declared vice president under the new administration.

El Salvador held presidential elections [NYT report] in February, in which Sanchez Ceren received 49 percent of the votes, narrowly missing the percentage required to win. The run-off election [BBC report] took place on March 9, when the results were deemed to close to call. After each candidate declared himself the winner, the election court asked the candidates to refrain from claiming victory until the votes had been recounted. After preliminary results indicated that candidate Norman Quijano lost by fewer than 7,000 votes, he called [BBC report] for the election to be annulled.

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