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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 October, 2004, 17:17 GMT 18:17 UK
World accepts Indonesian result
Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri inspects her troops for the last time as president during the 59th Anniversary of the Indonesian Military, Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2004, at Halim Air Force Base
President Megawati addressed her troops for the last time
World leaders have congratulated Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono on winning Indonesia's presidential election.

Their acknowledgement came even though the incumbent, Megawati Sukarnoputri, has still not formally admitted defeat.

A tearful Mrs Megawati urged the people to accept the result - an overwhelming victory for Mr Yudhoyono - but stopped short of admitting she lost.

Mr Yudhoyono's aides said messages of congratulations had been received from the US, China, Japan and the UK.

US President George Bush said: "We look forward to working with... Yudhoyono in further strengthening our ties and enhancing the welfare of our peoples."

Mr Yudhoyono said in a statement: "I am very touched by this spontaneous attention from the heads of friendly countries in every corner of the world,"

Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono waves to reporters, 4 October 2004
Widely referred to by initials SBY
Former general and security minister
Image as man of action may have won voters over
Now faces tasks of tackling regional unrest and terrorist threat

On Monday he was declared the official winner of Indonesia's first direct presidential election by 61% to 39%.

The former security chief will be sworn in on 20 October.

But he delayed a planned acceptance speech after Mrs Megawati failed to concede defeat.

"Whoever is chosen in a democratic election has to be accepted, because that is a victory for all of us," Mrs Megawati said on Tuesday, apparently on the verge of tears.

"We have to be able to show the world that our nation is a big nation and one of noble ethics," she said, in a speech to mark the country's armed forces day.

Mr Yudhoyono was also present at the ceremony, held at an airbase near the capital, Jakarta, but he was not sitting near Mrs Megawati.

It was not clear why Mrs Megawati was refusing to concede defeat, or whether she would do so.

Some members of her team have speculated about challenging the result, though the scale of her defeat suggests any challenge is unlikely to get far.

Any appeal would have to be submitted to the constitutional court by Thursday.


Mrs Megawati's reticence is creating problems for Mr Yudhoyono, who had hoped to start repairing relations with her powerful PDI-P party.

A spokesman for Mr Yudhoyono said on Monday he had wanted to wait until Mrs Megawati had spoken before he declared victory, in the interests of national reconciliation.

Mr Yudhoyono, who resigned from Mrs Megawati's government earlier this year, has made it clear he is preparing to take over.

"I will arrange the make-up of the next government and a programme for the first 100 days," he said.

"Our big theme will be reconciliation and working together within democracy for the country's future."


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