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Politics

Taiwan premier, cabinet submit resignations ahead of reshuffle

Moves come after DPP soundly beaten in November polls

Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang submitted his resignation along with that of his cabinet on Jan. 19.   © Reuters

TAIPEI (Reuters) -- Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang submitted his resignation along with that of his cabinet to President Tsai Ing-wen on Thursday ahead of a widely expected government reshuffle, but there was no immediate word about his successor.

Su's move follows the ruling Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) trouncing at local polls in November, and comes as Taiwan gears up for presidential and parliamentary elections in early 2024.

In a Facebook post, Su said he had asked Tsai to appoint a new cabinet so she could bring in new people.

Cabinet spokesman Lo Ping-cheng said in a separate statement that Su and his cabinet would formally step down once Tsai had confirmed their replacements.

The presidential office said the process of choosing a new cabinet will take place during the 10-day Lunar New Year holiday beginning on Friday so the new team will be ready once the break is over.

Su, 75, had originally submitted his resignation after the November poll losses, but Tsai asked him to stay on.

Taiwan media has swirled with speculation about who will replace him.

Su, who has served as premier since 2019, is known for his pithy remarks and slick, often humorous, social media presence. He has also been repeatedly critical of China, calling the country an "evil neighbour" last August as Beijing carried out war games near the island.

Su is one of the original founders of the DPP, established in 1986 when Taiwan was still under martial law.

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