December 2020


Congo (Kinshasa): Former governor of Orientale (2005-07) and Haut-Uélé (2016-19) Jean-Pierre Lola Kisanga dies.

Pakistan: Khalid Khurshid Khan is sworn in as chief minister of Gilgit-Baltistan.
Spain: Former president of the Council of Government of Cantabria (1987-90, 1991-95) Juan Hormaechea Cazón dies.


France: Former president (1974-81) Valéry Giscard d'Estaing (also president of the Regional Council of Auvergne 1986-2004) dies.
Jordan: Samir Mubaidin is appointed and sworn in as interior minister.
Pakistan: Former acting chief minister of Balochistan (1988, 1996-97) and prime minister (2002-04) Mir Zafarullah Khan Jamali dies.

Panama: Foreign Minister Alejandro Ferrer resigns. Erika Mouynes is sworn in as foreign minister.
Peru: Interior Minister Rubén Vargas resigns. Cluber Aliaga is sworn in as interior minister. On December 3 Prime Minister Violeta Bermúdez's government wins a confidence vote in parliament (111-7). On December 7 Aliaga also resigns and José Elice is sworn in as interior minister.
Thailand: The Constitutional Court acquits Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha of conflict-of-interest violations, which would have disqualified him from holding office.


China: Ren Zhenhe is appointed acting governor of Gansu.
Congo (Kinshasa): Tharcisse Kabatusuila Mbuyamba is formally appointed acting governor of Kasaï Central.

Cyprus: Tufan Erhürman, unable to form a government in North Cyprus, returns the mandate to President Ersin Tatar. On December 7 Tatar again asks Hamza Ersan Saner to form a government. On December 9 Saner announces his government with Tahsin Ertugruloglu as foreign minister, Kutlu Evren as interior minister, and Dursun Oguz as finance minister.
Pakistan: Former acting chief minister of Punjab (1996-97) Mian Muhammad Afzal Hayat dies.


Guernsey: Elections for 9 of 18 seats on the Chief Pleas of Sark having been scheduled for December 16, but only 6 candidates having been nominated, these are declared elected, the remaining 3 seats to be filled at a later date.
India: The administrator of Lakshadweep, Dineshwar Sharma, dies. On December 5 the administrator of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, Praful Patel, becomes also administrator of Lakshadweep.
South Korea: In a cabinet reshuffle, Jeon Hae Cheol is named interior minister. He is confirmed by the National Assembly on December 23 and officially appointed on December 24.

Malaysia: The chief minister of Perak, Datuk Seri Ahmad Faizal Azumu, loses a confidence vote in the state assembly (48-10). He resigns on December 5. On December 9 Datuk Saarani Mohamad is appointed chief minister (sworn in December 10).


Montenegro: The government of Prime Minister Zdravko Krivokapic (including Djordje Radulovic as foreign minister, see November 5) is elected in parliament (41-28) and sworn in.
Niger: In a cabinet reshuffle, Justice Minister Marou Amadou becomes acting foreign minister.
Russia: Former head of the administration of Kursk oblast (2000-18) Aleksandr Mikhailov dies.


China: Former governor of Gansu (2006-10) and Hunan (2010-13) Xu Shousheng dies.
Kuwait: In parliamentary elections, opposition or opposition-leaning candidates win 24 of 50 seats. The government resigns in a routine procedure on December 6. On December 8 the emir reappoints Sheikh Sabah Al Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah as prime minister. On December 14 the new cabinet is announced and sworn in, with Sheikh Hamad Jaber Al Ali Al Sabah as defense minister, Sheikh Thamer Ali Sabah Al Salim Al Sabah as interior minister, Khalifa Hamada as finance minister, and Sheikh Ahmad Nasser Al Muhammad Al Sabah remaining foreign minister.
Tanzania: President John Magufuli appoints the full cabinet, including Elias Kwandikwa as defense minister and George Simbachawene to continue as home affairs minister.


The Bahamas: Prime Minister Hubert Minnis says he will keep the finance portfolio.


Romania: In parliamentary elections, the Social Democratic Party wins about 30% of the vote (110 of 329 seats in the Chamber of Deputies and 47 of 136 in the Senate), the National Liberal Party about 25% (93 and 41), USR-Plus about 15% (55 and 25), the Alliance for the Unity of Romanians about 9% (33 and 14), and the Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania about 7% (21 and 9). Turnout is about 32%. On December 7 Prime Minister Ludovic Orban resigns and Defense Minister Nicolae Ciuca is named interim prime minister. On December 22 President Klaus Johannis names Florin Cîtu as prime minister-designate. On December 23 Cîtu announces his cabinet with Lucian Bode as interior minister and Alexandru Nazare as finance minister, while Bogdan Aurescu remains foreign minister and Ciuca defense minister; it is approved by parliament (260-186) and sworn in the same day.
Uruguay: Former president (2005-10, 2015-20) Tabaré Vázquez dies.
Venezuela: In parliamentary elections (boycotted by the main opposition), the Great Patriotic Pole (dominated by the United Socialist Party of Venezuela) wins 69.3% of the vote (253 of 277 seats) and the Democratic Alliance 18.8% (18). Turnout is 30.5%.


Ghana: In presidential elections, incumbent Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo (New Patriotic Party) wins 51.6% of the vote and former president John Dramani Mahama (National Democratic Congress) 47.4%. Turnout is 78.9%. In parliamentary elections, the New Patriotic Party and the National Democratic Congress each win 137 of the 275 seats, with one independent.


Lithuania: President Gitanas Nauseda approves the government to be headed by Ingrida Simonyte (including Gabrielius Landsbergis as foreign minister, see November 19). On December 11 the government program is approved in parliament (78-30 with 20 abstentions) and the government is sworn in.
United States: President-elect Joe Biden nominates Xavier Becerra as secretary of health and human services. On December 8 Biden nominates Lloyd Austin as defense secretary, on December 10 Tom Vilsack as agriculture secretary, Marcia Fudge as secretary of housing and urban development, Denis McDonough as secretary of veterans affairs, and Katherine Tai as trade representative, on December 15 Pete Buttigieg as transportation secretary, on December 17 Deb Haaland as secretary of the interior, Jennifer Granholm as energy secretary, and Michael Regan as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, and on December 22 Miguel Cardona as education secretary.


Argentina: Former governor of Salta (1977-83, 1991-95) Roberto Ulloa dies (night of December 7/8).
Egypt: After parliamentary runoffs held December 5-8, the final result shows the Mostaqbal Watan party (and candidates on lists headed by it) winning 454 of the 568 elected seats.
Gabon: Economy Minister Jean-Marie Ogandaga resigns. On December 9 Nicole Jeanine Lydie Roboty Mbou is appointed as economy minister.
United States: Brandon Scott is sworn in as mayor of Baltimore.
Zambia: Former foreign minister (1990-91) Benjamin Mibenge dies.


Belarus: Former chairman of the Council of Ministers (1990-94) Vyachaslau Kebich dies.
Indonesia: In gubernatorial elections in Kalimantan Utara, Zainal Arifin Paliwang is elected with 45.9% of the vote, defeating incumbent Irianto Lambrie (34.6%) and Udin Hianggio (19.5%); turnout is 75.0%. In Kepulauan Riau, Ansar Ahmad is elected with 40.0% of the vote, defeating incumbent Isdianto (36.3%) and Soerya Respationo (23.7%); turnout is 66.6%.
Switzerland: Guy Parmelin is elected president for 2021 (188 of 202 votes). Ignazio Cassis is elected vice president (162 of 191 votes).


Albania: Interior Minister Sandër Lleshi resigns. On December 16 Bledi Çuçi is nominated as interior minister; he is appointed by the president on December 17.
United States: Todd Gloria is sworn in as mayor of San Diego.


Pakistan: In a cabinet reshuffle, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed is named interior minister and Abdul Hafeez Shaikh finance minister.


Congo (Kinshasa): The provincial assembly of Nord-Ubangi adopts (10-6) a no-confidence motion against Governor Izato Nzege Koloke.
Ethiopia: Former prime minister (1987-89) Fikre Selassie Wogderess dies.
United States: In the mayoral runoff in El Paso, Oscar Leeser wins 79.5% of the vote and incumbent Dee Margo 20.5%. Turnout is 13.1%.


Eswatini: Prime Minister Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini dies. Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku subsequently is acting prime minister.
Nigeria: Former administrator of Anambra (acting, 1993) and Yobe (1993-96) Dabo Aliyu dies.


Bermuda: Rena Lalgie is sworn in as governor.
Czech Republic: Petr Kulhánek is elected governor of Karlovarský kraj.
Russia: Abdulpatakh Amirkhanov is appointed prime minister of Dagestan after he was confirmed by the local legislature on December 11.
Switzerland: Former Landammann of Nidwalden (1997-98, 2000-01) Werner Keller dies.
United States: It is announced that Attorney General William P. Barr will leave office December 23. Jeff Rosen is to become acting attorney general.


Côte d'Ivoire: Vagondo Diomandé is appointed interior minister.

Saint-Barthélemy/Saint-Martin: Serge Gouteyron takes office as prefect.
Tuvalu: Former prime minister (2002-04) Saufatu Sopoanga dies.


Switzerland: Former president of the Council of State of Ticino (1977-78, 1981-82), president (1991, 1998), and foreign minister (1993-99) Flavio Cotti dies.


Burundi: Former president (1987-93, 1996-2003) Pierre Buyoya dies.
Chile: Defense Minister Mario Desbordes resigns. On December 18 Baldo Prokuriça is sworn in as defense minister.


Andorra: Former head of government (1982-84, 1990-94) Òscar Ribas Reig dies.
Australia: Former governor of Western Australia (1993-2000) and governor-general (2003-08) Michael Jeffery dies.
Congo (Kinshasa): The provincial assembly of Mongala adopts (16-4) a no-confidence motion against Governor Crispin Ngbundu Malengo.
Georgia: Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia nominates a mostly unchanged cabinet. On December 24 the new government is confirmed by parliament (85-0; opposition boycotting).
Mexico: Former governor of Jalisco (2013-18) Jorge Aristóteles Sandoval Díaz is assassinated.
Nigeria: Former governor of North-Western state (1968-75) Usman Faruk dies.
United States: Former governor of Mississippi (1980-84) William Winter dies.
Venezuela: Former foreign minister (1999-2001) and executive vice-president (2002-07) José Vicente Rangel dies.

Wallis and Futuna: Christophe Lotigié is named acting administrator-superior effective December 21.

Bin Mubarak
Yemen: President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi names a new government. Maeen Abdul Malik remains prime minister, Ahmad Awad Bin Mubarak becomes foreign minister, Lt.Gen. Muhammad al-Maqdashi defense minister, Maj.Gen. Ibrahim Haydan interior minister, and Salem Bin Buraik finance minister. The government is sworn in on December 26.


Papua New Guinea: Former prime minister (1999-2002) Sir Mekere Morauta dies.


Nepal: Upon recommendation of Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli, President Bidya Devi Bhandari dissolves parliament and orders new elections to be held on April 30 and May 10, 2021.
Papua New Guinea: A new cabinet is announced with Soroi Eoe as foreign minister, Solan Mirisim as defense minister, and Sir John Pundari as finance minister.


India: Former chief minister of Madhya Pradesh (1985-88, 1989) and governor of Uttar Pradesh (1993-96) Motilal Vora dies.
Kosovo: The Constitutional Court annuls the June 3 election of the government of Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti.
Russia: Former prime minister of Chuvashia (1998) Lev Kurakov dies.


Colombia: Daniel Palacios is designated to replace Alicia Arango as interior minister.
Israel: The government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu collapses as parliament fails to meet a deadline to pass a budget. New elections are to be held on March 23, 2021.
Syria: Former prime minister (2000-03) Muhammad Mustafa Mero dies.


Moldova: The government of Prime Minister Ion Chicu resigns. On December 24 Maia Sandu is sworn in as president. On December 31 Chicu announces that Olga Cebotari will be acting prime minister from January 1, while Tatiana Ivanicichina will be acting finance minister; Sandu, however, appoints Foreign Minister Aureliu Ciocoi as acting prime minister effective January 1.


Eswatini: Former acting prime minister (2018) Vincent Mhlanga dies.
Malta: Former acting president (1976) John J. Cremona dies.


Congo (Kinshasa): The provincial assembly of Sud-Kivu rejects (26-17) a no-confidence motion against Governor Théo Ngwabidje Kasi.


Central African Republic: In presidential elections, incumbent Faustin Archange Touadéra (United Hearts Movement) wins 53.2% of the vote, former prime minister Anicet Georges Dologuélé (Union for Central African Renewal) 21.7%, and former prime minister Martin Ziguélé (Movement for the Liberation of the Central African People) 7.5%. Turnout is 76.3%. In the first round of parliamentary elections, 21 of 140 seats are filled, the second round to be held on February 14.
Niger: In the first round of presidential elections, former foreign minister Mohamed Bazoum of the Nigerien Party for Democracy and Socialism (PNDS) wins 39.3% of the vote, former president Mahamane Ousmane of the Democratic and Republican Renewal (RDR) 17.0%, former prime minister Seyni Oumarou of the National Movement of the Development Society (MNSD) 8.9%, Albadé Abouba of the Patriotic Movement for the Republic (MPR) 7.1%, and former foreign minister Ibrahim Yacouba of the Nigerien Patriotic Movement (MPN) 5.4%. Turnout is 69.7%. A runoff will be held on February 20. In parliamentary elections, the PNDS wins 80 of 166 seats, the Nigerien Democratic Movement for an African Federation 19, the MNSD 13, the MPR 13, the Congress for the Republic 8, the RDR 7, and the MPN 6.


Burkina Faso: President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré is sworn in for his second term. On December 30 he dissolves the government of Prime Minister Christophe Dabiré.
Congo (Kinshasa): The provincial assembly of Bas-Uélé adopts (15-0) a no-confidence motion against Governor Valentin Senga Paysayo.
French Guiana: Thierry Queffelec takes office as prefect.
Switzerland: Former president of the government of Basel-Stadt (1974-75, 1981-82, 1985-86) Eugen Keller dies.


Albania: Acting Foreign Minister Gent Cakaj resigns. In a cabinet reshuffle Olta Xhaçka is named foreign minister and Niko Peleshi defense minister; they are appointed by the president on December 31.
Anguilla: Perin Bradley is sworn in as acting governor, with effect from December 30.


Congo (Kinshasa): President Félix Tshisekedi appoints Modeste Bahati Lukwebo as informateur to identify a parliamentary majority as basis for a new government.
United States: Former governor of Pennsylvania (1979-87) and attorney general (1988-91) Richard Thornburgh dies.