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Aceh elects ex-rebel

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 - 01:52

April 18 - Voters in the Indonesian province of Aceh elect former rebel Zaini Abdullah as governor. Paul Chapman reports.

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Former rebel Zaini Abdullah is the new face of hope for a peaceful and stable future in the Indonesian province of Aceh. He's been elected governor with running mate Muzakir Manaf as his deputy. About 13 people were killed in the run-up to the poll, according to a Jakarta-based risk consulting group. But it's a far cry from the three-decade insurgency that once plagued the province and voters are optimistic. SOUNDBITE: ADI ABDULLAH, RESIDENT OF BANDA ACEH SAYING (Bahasa Indonesia): "The Acehnese people generally think that whoever is elected, whether from political parties or independent candidates, they want a peaceful Aceh without conflict." Aceh's new governor, Zaini Abdullah, says he's grateful for the chance of leadership. SOUNDBITE: ZAINI ABDULLAH, FORMER REBEL AND WINNING CANDIDATE, SAYING (Bahasa Indonesia): "I thank Allah and the people of Aceh who've given their hearts and trust to us to be leaders in Aceh." Aceh was devastated by the 2004 tsunami but the disaster prompted an end to the insurgency that killed thousands. The ballot eight years on is the latest landmark in a path towards peace that's become a model for other countries with similar problems. Five pairs of candidates contested the election, the second Aceh has held. Paul Chapman, Reuters

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Aceh elects ex-rebel

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 - 01:52