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Lithuanian economist wins presidential election

In this photo taken on May 8, 2019, economist Gitanas Nauseda and former finance minister Ingrida Simonyte, left, presidential candidates, pose for the media prior to the start of the televised live debate in Vilnius, Lithuania. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

VILNIUS, Lithuania (AP) -- Prominent economist Gitanas Nauseda won Lithuania's presidential election after his opponent conceded defeat Sunday.

"I am grateful to the people who voted today and I can promise that politics will be different now in Lithuania. Everybody deserves a better life in our beautiful country," Nauseda told a cheering crowd of supporters.

With 1,521 of the country's 1,972 voting districts counted late Sunday, data provided by Lithuania's Central Electoral Commission showed 55-year-old Gitanas Nauseda had taken 70% of the votes.

His opponent, Ingrida Simonyte, a former finance minister, congratulated Nauseda.

"That is our people's will and I respect it. I already called Mr. Nauseda and congratulated him with this victory wishing him to be a good president for all the people of Lithuania," Simonyte told reporters.

The president's main task is to oversee Lithuania's foreign and security policy including acting as the supreme commander of the armed forces.

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