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President-elect Luis Guillermo Solis waves to his supporters after winning the runoff election in San Jose April 6, 2014San José (AFP) – A candidate who was virtually unknown just months ago was elected Costa Rica’s president Sunday, becoming the first third-party member to win the highest office in decades. Luis Guillermo Solis with the moderate Citizen Action Party (PAC) soundly defeated ruling party candidate Johnny Araya in a run-off vote that followed a first round of balloting on February 2 in this Central American country. Solis benefitted greatly from voters’ disgust with the scandal-tarred administration of outgoing President Laura Chinchilla. A historian and former diplomat, Solis said that his administration will focus on transparency in the way public funds are used, economic growth to benefit all, and social tolerance.

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