07:10 GMT +320 March 2018
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    Khaltmaa Battulga, the presidential candidate of the opposition Democratic Party waves to reporters after addressing them in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, early July 8, 2017

    Putin Congratulates New Mongolian President-Elect

    © REUTERS/ B. Rentsendorj
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Battulga Khaltmaa, a Mongolian Democratic Party candidate who won the election and became Mongolia's new president-elect.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russian President Vladimir Putin has congratulated Battulga Khaltmaa from the opposition Mongolian Democratic Party on his election as Mongolia’s president and expressed hope that the relations between Moscow and Ulaanbaatar will improve further.

    The second round of presidential elections took place on Friday in Mongolia after it was pushed back two days due to a sports festival. Battulga was proclaimed as the winner, however the election's final results are yet to be announced by the country’s General Election Commission.

    "Vladimir Putin congratulated Khaltmaa Battulga on his election as President of Mongolia… In his message of congratulations, the President of Russia stressed the traditionally friendly and neighbourly relations between Russia and Mongolia and expressed an interest in further expanding mutually beneficial cooperation in all areas in the interests of the two countries’ peoples," the Kremlin’s press service said.

    Earlier in the day, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's (OSCE) election observation mission said in its report that the second round of the presidential election in Mongolia was held in accordance with international standards despite confusion over several legal issues with the country’s law, which is ambiguous on second round campaigning.

    The first round of presidential runoff in the country yielded no definitive winner after no candidate succeeded in securing over 50 percent of votes. Battulga led with 38 percent of votes, trailed by center-left Enkhbold.

    This is the seventh presidential election in the former Soviet-aligned state in Central Asia bordered by Russia and China. Sitting President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj is not eligible after two stints in office.


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