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Moon Jae-in claimed victory in South Korea after two of his rivals conceded

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UPDATE 11:33 a.m. EST:  Moon has claimed victory.

UPDATE 10:07 a.m. EST:  Two of Moon's challengers have conceded.

ORIGINAL STORY: After nearly a decade of conservative rule, exit polls in the South Korean presidential election indicate that liberal leader Moon Jae-in has won, CNBC reported. Moon won more than 40 percent of the vote in a field of 13 candidates. 

Moon's victory would end months of political uncertainty after former President Park Geun-hye was impeached over a corruption scandal. She was the first democratically elected leader in South Korea to be removed from office. 


"We will need to calmly wait and see as this was just exit polls," Moon said as he addressed Democratic Party members at a meeting. "But if things go on this way and we win, today's victory is thanks to sheer desperation of the people who wanted a regime change."

"We will accomplish the two tasks given to us, reform and national unity that the people of this country desire," he added. 


Moon is a proponent of putting national interests first. He published a book released in January that said South Korea needed to learn how to say "no to America." 

He also believes that the only way to institute security on the Korean peninsula is by meaningfully communicating with North Korea. This policy stance worries some U.S. officials, who think his attitude towards the hermit kingdom might undercut American efforts to increase pressure and sanctions. 

Presidential candidate Moon Jae-in canvassing

WATCH | Moon Jae-in canvassed voters in South Korea.

Moon Jae-in claimed victory in South Korea after two of his rivals conceded

WATCH | For more news you need, check out the 60 Second Circa. 

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