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Presidential and parliamentary elections started in Taiwan

Presidential and parliamentary elections started in Taiwan Photo: Presidential and parliamentary elections have started in Taiwan (Getty Images)

Election precincts have started operating in Taiwan, where residents of the island will vote today, January 13, to elect a new president and parliament, according to Reuters.

It is noted that the polling stations will be open for eight hours and will close at 4 p.m.

Almost immediately after the end of voting, the manual counting of ballots begins at the polling stations. Taiwan's legislation does not provide for electronic, absentee, or early voting. Preliminary voting results are expected to be announced by Saturday evening.

The incumbent president, Tsai Ing-wen, cannot run for re-election under the constitution after serving two terms in office.

Elections in Taiwan

According to many experts, elections in Taiwan hold significant geopolitical importance. The local authorities express concerns about potential interference from China in the conduct of the electoral process. Specifically, China began launching aerial balloons over the island on the eve of the voting.

On January 11, the United States sent a clear signal to China, opposing any external interference or influence on the upcoming presidential and parliamentary elections in Taiwan.

For more details on potential election winners, China's reaction, and the risk of a new war, refer to the material by RBC-Ukraine.

Confrontation between China and Taiwan

In recent years, China has been attempting to regain full control over Taiwan. The island nation, on its part, considers itself independent, with a separate economy and democratically elected leaders.

In late December, the President of the People's Republic of China, Xi Jinping, declared the inevitable "reunification" of Taiwan with mainland China and pledged to vehemently resist any attempts to "separate" the island. Beijing has also resumed military activities near the island.