Politics

Thailand elects Shinawatra as first female PM (PHOTOS)

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Yingluck Shinawatra greets parliamentarians on Aug. 5, 2011.

Credit:

Pornchai Kittiwongsakul

BANGKOK, Thailand — Yingluck Shinawatra was elected as the first female prime minister of Thailand in the parliament session on Aug. 5, 2011. 

Shinawatra, a 44-year old former businesswoman, is also the sister of Thailand's ex-prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, who was ousted in a military coup in 2006. In May 2011, Shinawatra's political party, Pheu Thai, named her as a candidate for prime minister, and they made a remarkable comeback, winning by a landslide in July.

On Aug. 5, Shinawatra was elected prime minister in parliament, with 296 of parliamentarians voting for her. Shinawatra faces the immediate challenge of bringing stability to the kingdom after five years of political turmoil and internal political divisions, according to the BBC

Despite her limited political experience Shinawatra is optimistic about the future and urged the global community to "help Thailand reinstall democracy, and trust and respect the people's decision," reports the Huffington Post

More from GlobalPost: First Female Heads of State (PHOTOS) 

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    Yingluck Shinawatra shakes hands with supporters after speaking at a campaign rally on June 29, 2011, in Sisaket, Thailand.

    Credit:

    Paula Bronstein

  • shinawatra_celebrates_party_victory_.jpg

    Yingluck Shinawatra celebrates the victory of her party, Puea Thai, at its headquarters in Bangkok on July 3, 2011. The party stormed to victory in elections, making a remarkable comeback after years of turmoil during Thailand's military coup.

    Credit:

    Nicolas Asfouri

  • thailand_reacts_to_shinwatra_.jpg

    Mixed reactions: supporters of the Democrat Party, which was previously in power and ruled by Abhisit Vejjajiva, Shinawatra's opposition, show displeasure at the announcement of exit polls on July 3, 2011, when Yingluck Shinawatra and her Puea Thai party saw a sweeping victory.

    Credit:

    Christophe Archambault

  • thai_parliament_votes_shinawatra.jpg

    Thailand's members of parliament raise their hands in support of Yingluck Shinawatra, electing her as the country's 28th and first female prime minister on Aug. 5, 2011. 296 of 500 MPs voted for Yingluck in the lower house, with 3 against and 197 abstaining.

    Credit:

    Athit Perawongmetha

  • shinawatra_greets_members_thailand_pm_opt.jpg

    Yingluck Shinawatra greets parliamentarians on Aug. 5, 2011.

    Credit:

    Pornchai Kittiwongsakul

  • shinawatra_press_thailand_pm.jpg

    Yingluck Shinawatra, newly elected prime minister of Thailand, speaks to the press at Parliament on Aug. 5, 2011 in Bangkok.

    Credit:

    Athit Perawongmetha

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    Red shirt supporters of Yingluck Shinawatra rejoice outside parliament after she was elected as the country's first female prime minister on Aug. 5, 2011 in Bangkok, Thailand.

    Credit:

    Athit Perawongmetha