Rene Preval sworn in as Haiti's new President
In a brief ceremony in Haiti's Parliament, Preval took the oath of office and the Senate leader placed the presidential sash on him.Updated: May 15, 2006 01:17 IST
Rene Preval, the only president in Haiti's history to finish a five-year term, was sworn in today to again lead the impoverished nation in its latest attempt at democracy after decades of armed uprisings, lawlessness and foreign intervention.
In a brief ceremony in Haiti's Parliament, Preval took the oath of office and the Senate leader placed the presidential sash on him. Afterward, Preval stood and waved as about 300 legislators and foreign diplomats, including Florida Gov Jeb Bush and Canadian Governor General Michaelle Jean, gave a standing ovation.
Preval replaces a US-backed interim government appointed to lead this Caribbean nation after former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide fled into exile in 2004.
Preval, 63, ruled Haiti from 1996 to 2001. He will have to overcome big challenges, including a corrupt state bureaucracy, a wrecked economy, roiling insecurity and the plight of prisoners.
Before the inauguration, prisoners rioted at Haiti's main prison.
First Published: May 15, 2006 01:17 IST