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Park Geun-hye is S Korea's woman at the top

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Park Geun-hye is S Korea's woman at the top

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South Korea has its first ever woman in the top job. The electoral commission has confirmed that the conservative Park Geun-hye has won the presidential election.

The 60-year-old will return to the presidential palace in Seoul where she was effectively the first lady in the 1970s. Her father was the military ruler at the time and she stepped in when her mother was assassinated.

There was little to choose between Park and her left-wing opponent Moon Jae-in: 51.6 per cent against 48 per cent.

Both had made campaign promises to re-engage with North Korea after increasingly hostile relations in recent years.

With nearly 90 per cent of votes counted, it was clear Park had an unassailable lead and Moon conceded defeat.

A priority in her single five-year term will be the economy, which has seen growth slow to about two per cent.