With barely more than a month under her belt as a professional politician, Yingluck Shinawatra stood poised Monday to become Thailand’s first woman prime minister after her Pheu Thai party scored a resounding victory in Sunday’s national elections. Riding a well-oiled political machine and benefiting from the popularity of her brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, who was deposed as prime minister in a 2006 military coup, Yingluck and her party won an apparent majority in parliament according to unofficial election returns.
In an attempt to stop the downward spiral of support for his ruling Socialist party, Spanish Prime Minister Jos Luis Rodrguez Zapatero ended months of speculation by announcing on Saturday that he will not seek re-election after completing his second four-year term next March. Now high-ranking members of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party will jockey for the job if, as expected, a primary is held after regional and local elections on May 22.
Three Iranians have been tentatively sentenced to death in connection with post-election protest activities, according to semi-official state media.
Iraqi authorities on Sunday closed all entrances into Ramadi and imposed a curfew after a series of car bombings killed at least 19 people and injured more than 80 others, according to Interior Ministry officials. The three — who were identified only by initials — were accused of contacts with opposition groups, the semi-official ISNA news agency reported Saturday.
Two Iranians who were caught up in the waves of arrests that followed the disputed presidential elections in June have accused their captors of raping them. An Iranian man and a woman made the allegations in separate interviews with CNN.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai has taken a wider lead in the race for the country’s top office, according to vote tallies released Saturday. The incumbent has 940,558 votes, with his nearest rival, Abdullah Abdullah, garnering 638,924 votes. Ramazan Bashardost was running third with 277,404 votes, said Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission
At first glance, it hardly looked like a vision of democratic perfection.