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The World Rejoices at the Historic Nomination of VP-Elect Kamala Harris

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A supporter (C) holds a national flag of India as she attends a watch party of US President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as they deliver remarks in Miami on November 7, 2020, after they were declared the winners of the presidential election. (Chandan Khanna/Getty Images)

It isn't just the United States watching the election with bated breath — the world watched closely as the results came in. Now many people around the globe are chiming in on Vice President-elect Kamala Harris' historic nomination.

Much has already been written on the nominee's background as a Black woman, and her identity as the daughter of immigrants — with a mother from India and a father from Jamaica.

The international community reacted to the news of Oakland-born and Berkeley-raised Harris as the vice president-elect with messages of hope from different parts of the world.

I'm happy to see that she is someone who has a long career, has the experience, has the qualifications,” said Pacinthe Mattar, an Egyptian woman who immigrated to Canada in the 1980s, “But at the same time, sometimes I think our obsession over representation when we don't see ourselves often in news or media or politics can make us blind to … what kind of work they're going to be doing and what systems they're going to uphold.”

Mattar said she's cheering Harris while also hoping "that her politics and her policies and the way that she helps lead the U.S. is going to be, not just a win for representation, but for the impact that it's going to have on Black women and the lives of peoples of color in the work that she does.”


Congratulations came in from other Canadians as well, some touting the fact that she is also the first graduate of Westmount High School in Montreal to be elected as vice president.

In India, officials — as well as Bollywood stars — took to social media to post congratulatory messages.

Villagers in her ancestral home in Tamil Nadu sent congratulatory messages, set off firecrackers, carried placards and offered prayers after they awoke Sunday morning to the news.

Groups gathered at street corners in Thulasendrapuram, a village of 350 people, reading newspapers and chatting about the victory before moving to a temple according to the Associated Press.

A woman wrote outside her home: “Congratulations Kamala Harris. Pride of our village. Vanakkam (Greetings) America.”

And Harris' uncle,  Gopalan Balachandran, told The Washington Post: “This is a big moment, no question about it,” he said. “It’s good for the United States. It’s good for many people.”

In Jamaica, Prime Minister Andrew Holness expressed support and pride in Harris' Jamaican heritage.

Additional messages came in from France, Germany, the United Kingdom and elsewhere congratulating President-elect Joe Biden as well as VP-elect Harris.

While much of the positivity focused on Harris, some of the strength of the reaction may have been fueled by perceptions of Trump, said NBC News Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel.

"As the results came through tonight, people were reacting like the United States had overthrown a dictator,” he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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