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US election reaction

In quotes: US election reaction

Democratic Senator Barack Obama will take his place in the White House after a long and hard-fought campaign, defeating Republican rival John McCain to become the first black president of the United States.

Leaders from around the globe have been giving their reaction to this historic victory.

REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CONTENDER, JOHN McCAIN

“We have come to the end of a long journey. The American people have spoken and they have spoken clearly.

“A little while ago, I had the honour of calling Senator Barack Obama to congratulate him on being elected the next president of the country that we both love.

“Every candidate makes mistakes and I’m sure I made my share of them. But I won’t spend a moment of the future regretting what might have been.

“This campaign was and will remain the great honour of my life.

“And my heart is filled with nothing but gratitude for the experience, and to the American people for giving me a fair hearing before deciding that Senator Obama and my old friend Senator Joe Biden should have the honour of leading us for the next four years.”

US PRESIDENT, GEORGE W BUSH

“Mr President-elect, congratulations to you. What an awesome night for you, your family and your supporters.

“I promise to make this a smooth transition. You are about to go on one of the great journeys of life. Congratulations and go enjoy yourself.”

FRENCH PRESIDENT, NICOLAS SARKOZY

“I give you my warmest congratulations and, through me, those of all French people. Your brilliant victory rewards a tireless commitment to serve the American people.

“It also crowns an exceptional campaign whose inspiration and exaltation have proved to the entire world the vitality of American democracy.

“By choosing you, the American people have chosen change, openness and optimism. At a time when all of us must face huge challenges together, your election raises great hope in France, in Europe and elsewhere in the world.”

UK PRIME MINISTER, GORDON BROWN

“I would like to offer my sincere congratulations to Barack Obama on winning the presidency of the United States.

“I would also like to pay tribute to Senator McCain who fought a good campaign and has shown the characteristic dignity that has marked a lifetime of service to his country.

“The relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom is vital to our prosperity and security.

“Barack Obama ran an inspirational campaign, energising politics with his progressive values and his vision for the future. I know Barack Obama, and we share many values.

“We both have determination to show that government can act to help people fairly through these difficult times facing the global economy. And I look forward to working extremely closely with him in the coming months and years.”

EUROPEAN COMMISSION CHIEF, JOSE MANUEL BARROSO

“This is a time for a renewed commitment between Europe and the United States of America. We need to change the current crisis into a new opportunity. We need a new deal for a new world.

“I sincerely hope that with the leadership of President Obama, the United States of America will join forces with Europe to drive this new deal – for the benefit of our societies, for the benefit of the world.

“France, Europe and the international community need his energy, his rejection of injustice and his determination to go forward to build a safer, fairer and more stable world.”

ADVISER TO IRAQI PRIME MINISTER NOURI MALIKI, SADEQ RIQABI

“I congratulate the people of America at this moment when they made history. A new generation has broken through the colour barriers in choosing Obama.

“The American people have presented a tremendous example to the world by ignoring racist attitudes – and this is an unprecedented example of democracy.

“We in Iraq, with our newly-born democracy, look forward to working with the United States.

“There are common interests between our two nations, and at the same time we appreciate and value the sacrifices of the present US administration. They are an investment for the future.”

KENYAN PRESIDENT, MWAI KIBAKI

“This is a momentous day not only in the history of the United States of America, but also for us in Kenya.

“The victory of Senator Obama is our own victory because of his roots here in Kenya. As a country, we are full of pride for his success.

“We the Kenyan people are immensely proud of your Kenyan roots. Your victory is not only an inspiration to millions of people all over the world, but it has special resonance with us here in Kenya.

“I am confident that your presidency shall herald a new chapter of dialogue between the American people and the world at large.”

AFGHAN PRESIDENT, HAMID KARZAI

“I applaud the American people for their great decision and I hope that this new administration in the United States of America, and the fact of the massive show of concern for human beings and lack of interest in race and colour while electing the president, will go a long way in bringing the same values to the rest of world sooner or later.

“I applaud the American people once again and hope that this election and President Obama’s coming into office will bring peace to Afghanistan, life to Afghanistan and prosperity to the Afghan people and to the rest of the world.”

CHINA’S PRESIDENT, HU JINTAO

“In a new historical era, I look forward to taking our bilateral relationship of constructive co-operation to a new level.”

PALESTINIAN LEADER, MAHMOUD ABBAS

“President Abbas congratulates US President-elect Barack Obama in his name and in the name of the Palestinian people, and hopes he will speed up efforts to achieve peace, particularly since a resolution of the Palestinian problem and the Israeli-Arab conflict is key to world peace.

“President Abbas hopes the new administration will continue to make the peace efforts one of its top priorities.”

JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER, TARO ASO

“As the world faces many difficult issues, I am sure that the United States, under the excellent leadership of President-elect Obama, will move further forward while co-operating with the international community.

“The Japan-US alliance is key to Japanese diplomacy and it is the foundation for peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region.

“With President-elect Obama, I will strengthen the Japan-US alliance further and work towards resolving global issues such as the world economy, terror and the environment.”

AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER, KEVIN RUDD

“Twenty-five years ago Martin Luther King had a dream of an America where men and women would be judged not on the colour of their skin but on the content of their character.

“Today what America has done is turn that dream into a reality.”

ISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN, YGAL PALMOR

“Israelis congratulate the two great friends of Israel, John McCain for his great campaign, Barack Obama for his historic victory.

“We are certain the Israeli-American friendship faces a bright future.”

NEW ZEALAND PRIME MINISTER, HELEN CLARK

“Senator Obama will be taking office at a critical juncture. There are many pressing challenges facing the international community, including the global financial crisis and global warming.

“We look forward to working closely with President-elect Obama and his team to address these challenges.”

SOMALI PRESIDENT, ABDULLAHI YUSUF AHMED

“I am congratulating Barack Obama for his election as the president of the United States of America.

“I am hopeful that he will help end major crises in the world, particularly the endless conflict in my country Somalia.

“This was an historic election in which a proper leader was elected. This is a great moment for America and Africa.”

CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER, STEPHEN HARPER

“I look forward to meeting with the president-elect so that we can continue to strengthen the special bond that exists between Canada and the United States.

“In the weeks and months ahead… ministers in our government look forward to building a strong working relationship with their counterparts in a new Obama cabinet.”

PAKISTANI EMBASSY IN WASHINGTON

“President Asif Ali Zardari expressed the hope that Pakistan-US relations will be enhanced under the new American leadership that received a popular mandate in Tuesday’s poll.”

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November 5, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized |

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