February 2003


Madagascar: Gen. Soja takes office as governor of Toliara. On February 4 Gen. Ravelomanga Randrianarivo takes office as governor of Fianarantsoa, after a few days of resistance by his predecessor Pety Rakotoniaina.
Pakistan: Abdul Qadir is sworn in as governor of Balochistan.

Switzerland: Christoph Eymann becomes president of the government of Basel-Stadt.
Tanzania: Omar Ramadhan Mapuri is named home affairs minister.
United States: Former secretary of agriculture (1986-89) Richard Lyng dies.


Czech Republic: President Václav Havel leaves office. As the parliament failed to elect a successor, Prime Minister Vladimír Spidla takes over his representative functions, while other functions normally assigned to the president will be fulfilled by the speaker of the lower house, Lubomír Zaorálek.
Germany: In state elections in Hessen, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) wins 48.8% of the vote (56 of 110 seats), the Social Democratic Party (SPD) 29.1% (33), the Greens 10.1% (12), and the Free Democratic Party (FDP) 7.9% (9). Turnout is 64.6%. In Niedersachsen, the CDU wins 48.3% (91 of 183 seats), the SPD 33.4% (63), the FDP 8.1% (15), and the Greens 7.6% (14). Turnout is 67%.
Myanmar: Maj.Gen. Hla Tun is appointed to replace Khin Maung Thein as finance minister.
Russia: In gubernatorial elections in Magadan oblast, Nikolay Karpenko comes first with 37.6% of the vote, ahead of Acting Governor Nikolay Dudov with 26% and Andrey Zinchenko with about 10%. Turnout is about 54%. In the second round on February 16 Dudov wins 50.4% against 42.4% for Karpenko, 6.2% voting against all. Turnout is 52.2%. Dudov takes office February 28.


Estonia: Interior Minister Ain Seppik resigns. Toomas Varek is appointed in his place, taking office on February 10.

United States: John Snow is sworn in as treasury secretary.


Algeria: Former president of the Provisional Government of the Algerian Republic (1961-62) Benyoucef Ben Khedda dies.
Mauritius: Serge Clair becomes chief commissioner of Rodrigues.
Yugoslavia: The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia is abolished and replaced with a looser federation called Serbia and Montenegro. The existing federal institutions continue to operate in the next few weeks. On February 25 the deputies of a new joint parliament are appointed, reflecting a mixture of diverse political parties from both the Serbian and Montenegrin parliaments.


Australia: The Senate passes a no-confidence motion in Prime Minister John Howard (34-31) but a similar motion fails in the lower house (82-63).
Indonesia: Tursandi Alwi becomes acting governor of Lampung, replacing Oemarsono, whose regular term of office ended January 26. President Megawati Sukarnoputri has blocked the swearing in of Governor-elect Alzier Dianis Thabrani.

Russia: The head of the pro-Moscow administration of Chechnya, Akhmad Kadyrov, announces the dismissal of Prime Minister Mikhail Babich. Babich formally resigns on February 8, and on February 10 Anatoly Popov is appointed as prime minister.


Russia: Yegor Borisov becomes prime minister of Sakha.


United States: Susan Morissey Livingstone steps down as acting Navy secretary and is replaced by Hansford T. Johnson.


Thailand: King Bhumibol Adulyadej approves a cabinet reshuffle, in which Suchart Jaovisidha replaces Somkid Jatusripitak as finance minister.

Zambia: In a cabinet reshuffle, President Levy Mwanawasa relinquishes the defense portfolio and gives it to Michael Mabenga. Ronnie Shikapwasha becomes home affairs minister.


Monaco: In parliamentary elections, the opposition Union for Monaco wins 21 of 24 seats and the National Democratic Union 3. Turnout is about 80%.
Serbia and Montenegro: Presidential elections in Montenegro fail again when turnout is only 47.7%. Filip Vujanovic wins 81.5% of the votes, Dragan Hajdukovic 7.1%, and Aleksandar Vasilijevic 3.9%.


Côte d'Ivoire: Seydou Diarra is sworn in as prime minister.


Equatorial Guinea: A new cabinet is formed, including Pastor Micha Ondo Bile as foreign minister and Marcelino Owono Edu as finance minister; Clemente Engonga Nguema Onguene is confirmed as interior minister.
Paraguay: President Luis Ángel González Macchi survives an impeachment trial as the Senate votes 25-18 against him, short of the two-thirds majority (30 votes) necessary to remove him from power.


United States: Former national security advisor (1966-69) Walt W. Rostow dies.


Bosnia and Herzegovina: Ahmet Hadzipasic is elected and sworn in as prime minister of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the new cabinet, Dragan Vrankic becomes finance minister, Miroslav Nikolic defense minister, and Mevludin Halilovic interior minister.
Botswana: Former foreign minister (1969-71) Edison Masisi dies.

Niue: New high commissioner Sandra Lee arrives.
Trinidad and Tobago: George Maxwell Richards is elected president, with 43 votes in the Electoral College against 25 for Ganace Ramdial. Richards is to be inaugurated March 17.
United States: Boise mayor H. Brent Coles resigns. Jerome Mapp becomes acting mayor until February 18, when the City Council appoints Carolyn Terteling-Payne as new mayor.


Madagascar: Former prime minister (1993-95) Francisque Ravony dies.


Cyprus: Tassos Papadopoulos wins presidential elections with 51.5% of the vote, against 38.8% for incumbent Glafkos Kliridis and 6.6% for Alekos Markidis. Turnout is 90.5%. Papadopoulos takes office February 28.
Russia: Nikolay Merkushkin is reelected as head of the republic of Mordovia with 87.5% of the vote. Anatoly Chubukov wins about 7%, three other candidates 1.5%, and 2.1% vote against all candidates. Turnout is 81.5%.


Congo (Kinshasa): Finance Minister Matungulu Mbuyamu resigns. Deputy Finance Minister Léonard Luhongwe takes over as acting minister on February 18.

Russia: Oleg Budargin takes office as governor of Taymyr autonomous okrug.


Armenia: In presidential elections, incumbent Robert Kocharyan wins 48.3% of the vote, Stepan Demirchyan 27.4%, and Artashes Geghamyan 16.9%. Turnout is 61.2%. A runoff is to be held on March 5.
Bolivia: In a cabinet reshuffle, Yerko Kukoc del Carpio becomes interior minister.
Uruguay: Former president of the National Council of Government (1965-66) Washington Beltrán dies.


Bosnia and Herzegovina: The finance minister of the Republika Srpska, Simeun Vilendecic, resigns. Until a new minister is appointed, Prime Minister Dragan Mikerevic will act as finance minister.
United States: Former governor of Minnesota (1955-61) and agriculture secretary (1961-69) Orville L. Freeman dies.


China: Han Zheng is elected mayor of Shanghai.
Turkmenistan: Ashir Atayev is appointed interior minister, replacing Gen. Annaberdy Kakabayev.


Ireland: Former member of the Presidential Commission (1974, 1976) Thomas O'Higgins dies.
Kiribati: Incumbent Teburoro Tito wins presidential elections with 50.4% of the vote against 48.4% for Taberannang Timeon and 1.2% for Bakeua Bakeua Tekita.



South Korea: Roh Moo Hyun takes office as president. On February 26 parliament approves Goh Kun as prime minister (163-81). On February 27 Roh appoints a new cabinet, including Yoon Young Kwan as foreign minister, Cho Young Kil as defense minister, Kim Jin Pyo as finance minister, and Kim Doo Kwan as home affairs minister.
Netherlands Antilles: Former governor (1983-90) René A. Römer dies.
United States: In mayoral elections in Chicago, incumbent Richard M. Daley wins 78.5% of the vote.


India: In state elections in Himachal Pradesh, the Congress Party wins 40 seats and the Bharatiya Janata Party 16; in Meghalaya, Congress wins 22 seats and the Nationalist Congress Party 14; in Nagaland, Congress wins 21 seats and the Nagaland People's Front 19; in Tripura, the Communist Party of India-Marxist wins 37 seats and the Congress 12.
Lithuania: Rolandas Paksas takes office as president.


Nigeria: Former Kano governor (1983) Abdu Dawakin Tofa dies.
Venezuela: Former junta chairman (1958) Wolfgang Larrazábal dies.


Austria: Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel's new government is sworn in. Foreign Minister Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Finance Minister Karl-Heinz Grasser, and Interior Minister Ernst Strasser stay in their posts, while Günther Platter becomes defense minister.
Czech Republic: In a new attempt to elect a president, Václav Klaus wins the lower house 115-81 over Jan Sokol, but Sokol wins the Senate 47-32. A second round is equally inconclusive, the lower house vote being 109-83 and the Senate vote 46-30. In the third round, in which votes from both chambers are counted together, Klaus finally wins a majority with 142 votes over Sokol's 124. He will take office March 7.

Israel: The Knesset approves the new cabinet, including Silvan Shalom as foreign minister, Benjamin Netanyahu as finance minister, Avraham Poraz as interior minister, and Shaul Mofaz continuing as defense minister.