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Kinahan wins South Antrim for UUP

The UUP's Danny Kinahan has taken South Antrim from the DUP following a fierce battle with William McCrea.

Ulster Unionist Mr Kinahan, who was standing for Westminster for the first time, received 11,942 votes, just 949 more than the DUP's Mr McCrea, the outgoing MP.

Mr McCrea, a Free Presbyterian minister, had held the seat since 2005, after defeating David Burnside of the UUP in a constituency where the two unionist parties have battled for dominance.

Mr Kinahan, a former army officer, said: "It's an immense privilege to have been elected by the people of South Antrim.

"I pledge to work hard for all of the people in the constituency.

"I've talked about the issue of equality in this campaign. We have to respect the churches, we have to respect each other's religions, but we also have to have a fair and equal society, which is why I am in politics."

Congratulating Mr Kinahan, William McCrea said: "It has been my honour and privilege to serve the people of South Antrim for the past ten years. As I pass the mantle to Danny, I leave with dignity, with integrity and with great pride."

The Conservative Party's Alan Dunlop came in last with just 415 votes, while the TUV's Richard Cairns, who missed out on a council seat last year, increased the party's 2010 vote slightly to 1,908.

The turnout was 54.48%.

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