Veteran Essebsi wins Tunisia's first free presidential vote

A young girl holds flags from a car as supporters of newly-elected President Beji Caid Essebsi celebrate his victory on December 22, 2014 in TunisVeteran anti-Islamist politician Beji Caid Essebsi was declared the winner of Tunisia’s first free presidential election on Monday, capping off the transition to democracy in the birthplace of the Arab Spring. Essebsi, an 88-year-old former official in previous Tunisian regimes, took 55.68 percent of the vote to defeat incumbent Moncef Marzouki in Sunday’s run-off, the electoral commission said. Essebsi thanked Marzouki and told him: “Tunisia’s future lies in consensus and it needs all its children, without exclusion or discrimination,” a party statement said.

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