Antonio Guterres took the oath of office on Monday as the United Nations’ new secretary-general during a formal ceremony at the General Assembly.
The former prime minister of Portugal pledged to “exercise in all loyalty, discretion and conscience” his duties as UN chief when he takes charge on January 1.
The 67-year-old was elected by acclamation in the General Assembly in October to become the ninth UN chief in the world body’s 71-year history.
Guterres will replace Ban Ki-moon, 72, of South Korea. Ban steps down at the end of 2016 after serving two five-year terms.
Guterres was Portugal’s prime minister from 1995 to 2002 and UN High Commissioner for Refugees from 2005 to 2015. He performed well in answering questions before the General Assembly while campaigning for the job, while his executive experience propelled him to first place among the 13 candidates vying for the job in informal polls in the Security Council.