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|Friday, September 21, 2001, updated at 09:13(GMT+8)|
Lukashenko Sworn in as Belarussian PresidentAlexander Lukashenko was sworn in as the Belarussian president for the second term Thursday, Russian news agency reported.
Lukashenko was re-elected in the September 9 presidential election with a support rate of 76 percent.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Lukashenko thanked the Belarussian people for their confidence and trust.
Noting the government is facing a responsible and difficult period, the president, who will take office for another five years, vowed to further develop a powerful policy of social welfare.
"We have a idea to built a powerful and prosperous Belarus," he added.
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent a congratulation message to Lukashenko on the same day, pledging to further strengthen bilateral relations.
"Our countries are steadfastly and invariably working on the consolidation of the fraternal friendship, cooperation and multifaceted relations in the (Russian-Belarussian) union," Putin wrote.
"I am confident we can solve the grand tasks of further integration between Russia and Belarus in the interests of strengthening the union and ensuring welfare and prosperity of our peoples" he added.
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