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US hails Malaysian vote result, notes 'irregularities'

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak (3rd L) celebrates his electoral victory on May 6, 2013 in Kuala Lumpur
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak (3rd L) celebrates his electoral victory with members of the Barisan Nasional (National Front) coalition, on May 6, 2013 in Kuala Lumpur.

The United States Monday congratulated Malaysia's ruling coalition, in power for more than five decades, for winning re-election, while acknowledging some "irregularities" as the opposition charged.

"We congratulate Barisan Nasional and Prime Minister Najib (Razak) on their victory in Malaysia's 13th general election. We look forward to working with the new government once it is formed," said State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell.

Still, "we are aware of concerns about voting irregularities and note that the opposition parties faced significant restrictions on access to the media. Addressing these issues is important to strengthening confidence in the electoral process.

"And so we call on all parties to peacefully respect the will of the voters," Ventrell stressed.

He stopped short of calling for a recount in the former British colony in southeast Asia, however.

The opposition has called a rally for Wednesday in a stadium on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur to denounce what it called foul play.

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