TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A candidate who promised to cut ties with Taiwan in favor of China has been declared the victor in the Honduran presidential elections.
Honduras, one of Taiwan's 15 remaining diplomatic allies, has had relations with the country for 80 years. However, this relationship may soon come to an end as a pro-China candidate has emerged as the clear victor in the presidential race.
Top opposition party the Liberty and Refoundation Party (LIBRE) at 6:24 p.m. Tegucigalpa time on Sunday (Nov. 28) declared that its candidate Xiomara Castro had won the election. At 7 p.m., Radio America Honduras confirmed Castro had won 48% percent of the vote, while Tegucigalpa Mayor Nasry Asfura of the ruling National Party had received 37% and Liberal Party of Honduras candidate Yani Rosenthal had received 12%.
By Monday morning (Nov. 29), Castro's lead had grown to 53.61% to Asfura's 33.87%, with Rosenthal dropping even further back at 9.21%, according to Radio America HN.
One of Castro's campaign pledges was that if elected, "Honduras will immediately open diplomatic and commercial connections with mainland China." China's condition for countries to establish diplomatic relations with it is that they must cut official ties with Taiwan.
However, a close aid to Castro on Nov. 23 was cited by Reuters as saying that she had not yet finalized her decision on whether to recognize China over Taiwan. A senior U.S. State Department official on Nov. 24 told the news agency that the U.S. had made it clear to both major Honduran presidential candidates that it wants the country to retain diplomatic ties with Taiwan.
#VotemosInformados #EleccionesHonduras2021— Radio América HN (@radioamericahn) November 29, 2021
ULTIMA HORA| De acuerdo a resultados a boca de urna de Radio América, Xiomara Castro aventaja a Nasry Asfura por más de 10 puntos. pic.twitter.com/WbzTmiGCRT