Croatia's first woman president sworn in

Updated: 2015-02-16 09:11


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Croatia's first woman president sworn in

Croatia's new President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic signs a solemn oath as the country's fourth president at an inauguration ceremony in Zagreb's St. Mark's Square February 15, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

"I hope that countries in Southeast Europe become members of the European family and in this respect we offer hand of cooperation," she said.

She also hopes to resolve remaining issues between neighboring countries, such as border disputes, establishing the truth about its missing persons in the Balkan wars of the 1990s, as well as the mutual respect of minority groups' rights.

Dozens of foreign delegations attended the inauguration ceremony. Participants of the ceremony include Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Slovak President Andrej Kiska, Hungarian President Janos Ader, and Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic.

Chinese President Xi Jinping's special envoy, Miao Wei, who is currently the minister of industry and information technology, also attended the ceremony.

Grabar-Kitarovic, 46, won the presidential election after defeating President Ivo Josipovic in a run-off in January, 2015. She is the fourth President of Croatia and also the first woman to hold the title of Croatian President since the country's independence in 1991.

She had served as Croatia's foreign minister, Croatia's ambassador to the United States and the Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy at NATO.

Born in Lubarska, near the Croatian coastal city of Rijeka, she obtained a master degree in international relations from the University of Zagreb, and was a Fulbright Scholar at the George Washington University in the United States.

Croatian President is elected every five years and can serve no more than two consecutive terms. Josipovic, the third President of the country, took office in 2010.

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