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Rajoelina installed as President of Madagascar

ANDRY Rajoelina was formally installed as President of Madagascar in an official ceremony held in a stadium at the center of the capital city this morning.

The ceremony was attended by tens of thousands of his supporters.

Rajoelina, proclaiming himself leader of the Indian Ocean island country earlier last February, was legalized as President by the High Constitutional Court Thursday following the step-down of ex-president Marc Ravalomanana.

The former mayor of Antananarivo was backed by great parts of the armed forces.

The African Union (AU) decided yesterday to suspend Madagascar's membership, denouncing this week's change in government there as a coup.

After a closed-door meeting on the situation in Madagascar, the AU Peace and Security Council made this decision as what happened in Madagascar constituted "unconstitutional change of government, "said Bruno Nongoma Zidouemba, Burkina Faso's representative to the AU.

The council has given this Indian Ocean island country six months to hold a general election, said Zidouemba who is the council's chairman.

Ravalomanana on Tuesday stepped down and handed power to the military, which in turn transferred power to opposition leader Rajoelina who had led months of protests.


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