Pakistan: Mohammad Haneef Ramay, former governor (1973-74) and chief minister (1974-75) of Punjab, dies.
Switzerland: Moritz Leuenberger takes office as president. Claude Grandjean becomes president of the Council of State of Fribourg, Claudio Lardi president of the government of Graubünden, Elisabeth Baume-Schneider president of the government of Jura, Anton Schwingruber Schultheiss of Luzern, Hans-Peter Lenherr president of the government of Schaffhausen, Christian Wanner Landammann of Solothurn, and Pascal Broulis president of the Council of State of Vaud.
United States: Byron Brown takes office as mayor of Buffalo.
United States: Frank Jackson takes office as mayor of Cleveland.
Côte d'Ivoire: Youssouf Bakayoko takes office as foreign minister.
Papua New Guinea: Former prime minister (1997-99) and acting governor-general (2003-04) Sir William Skate dies.
United States: Donald C. Winter is sworn in as Navy secretary.
United States: Bob O'Connor is sworn in as mayor of Pittsburgh and Carty Finkbeiner as mayor of Toledo.
Burkina Faso: Prime Minister Paramanga Ernest Yonli resigns. He is reappointed on January 5. The composition of the new government is announced January 6, with no change in the main portfolios.
French Polynesia: Finance Minister Émile Vanfasse resigns. Vice President Jacqui Drollet replaces him.
Israel: Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert becomes acting prime minister due to the illness of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.
Tanzania: President Jakaya Kikwete announces his cabinet, including Asha-Rose Migiro as foreign minister, Juma Kapuya as defense minister, Zakia Meghji as finance minister, and John Chiligati as home affairs minister.
United Arab Emirates: Vice President and Prime Minister Sheikh Maktum ibn Rashid Al Maktum (the ruler of Dubai) dies. His brother Sheikh Muhammad ibn Rashid Al Maktum succeeds as ruler of Dubai and on January 5 is also appointed vice president and prime minister.
Muh. Al Maktum
Latvia: Parliament approves Linda Murniece as defense minister.
Uzbekistan: President Islam Karimov appoints Bakhodir Matlyubov as interior minister.
Poland: Finance Minister Teresa Lubinska resigns. Zyta Gilowska is named to replace her. She is sworn in on January 7.
Arab Maghreb Union: Former Tunisian foreign minister Habib Ben Yahia is designated as new secretary-general. He is to take office February 1.
Indonesia: Sodjuangon Situmorang is installed as acting governor of Papua.
Northern Mariana Islands: Benigno R. Fitial is sworn in as governor.
United States: The acting governor of New Jersey, Richard J. Codey, signs a bill allowing anyone who served six months as acting governor to be officially called governor. He thus becomes governor for his remaining 8 days in office.
Ukraine: Parliament votes 250-50 to dismiss Prime Minister Yuriy Yekhanurov and his cabinet. Yekhanurov says the vote is nonbinding and will have no effect.
Benin: Defense Minister Pierre Osho resigns. On January 27 Martin Dohou Azonhiho is appointed defense minister.
British Virgin Islands: David Pearey is appointed as governor, to take office in April.
Mongolia: The ministers from the Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (including Foreign Minister Tsendiyn Munkh-Orgil, Defense Minister Tserenkhuugiyn Sharavdorj, and Justice and Home Affairs Minister Sundui Batbold) resign. On January 13 the parliament accepts the resignations, bringing down the government of Prime Minister Tsakhiagiyn Elbegdorj. On January 25 the parliament elects Miyeegombo Enkhbold as prime minister. A new cabinet is elected on January 28, including Nyamaa Enkhbold as foreign minister, Mishigiyn Sonompil as defense minister, Nadmidyn Bayartsaikhan as finance minister, and Dorjiyn Odbayar as justice and internal affairs minister.
Nigeria: The governor of Oyo, Rashidi Ladoja, is removed from office and the deputy governor, Adebayo Alao-Akala, is sworn in as governor.
Congo (Kinshasa): Gérard Gifuza is sworn in as governor of Bandundu.
Israel: Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom resigns (effective January 16). Tzipi Livni is appointed foreign minister on January 18.
United States: Tim Kaine is inaugurated as governor of Virginia.
Chile: In the presidential election runoff, Michelle Bachelet wins 53.5% of the vote and Sebastián Piñera 46.5%. Bachelet is to take office March 11. On January 30 she announces her cabinet, including Alejandro Foxley as foreign minister, Vivianne Blanlot as defense minister, Andrés Zaldívar as interior minister, and Andrés Velasco as finance minister.
Finland: In presidential elections, incumbent Tarja Halonen (Social Democratic Party) wins 46.3% of the vote, Sauli Niinistö (National Coalition Party) 24.1%, Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen (Centre Party) 18.6%, and Heidi Hautala (Green League) 3.5%. Turnout is 73.9%. A runoff is held on January 29, Halonen winning 51.8% and Niinistö 48.2%. Turnout is 77.2%.
Kuwait: Emir Sheikh Jabir Al Ahmad Al Jabir Al Sabah dies. Crown Prince Sheikh Saad Al Abdullah Al Salim Al Sabah becomes the new emir, but on January 23 he agrees to abdicate. On January 24 the parliament, shortly before receiving the abdication letter, votes to remove Saad. The cabinet nominates the prime minister, Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Jabir Al Sabah, as new emir; he is unanimously confirmed by parliament and installed on January 29.
Australia: The premier of Western Australia, Geoff Gallop, resigns. The deputy premier, Eric Ripper, becomes acting premier. On January 25 Alan Carpenter is sworn in as premier.
Indonesia: Gubernatorial elections in Sulawesi Tengah are won by former governor Bandjela Paliudju with 36.2% of the vote, defeating Rully Lamadjido (33.3%), incumbent Aminuddin Ponulele (25.4%), and Jusuf Paddong (5%).
Liberia: Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is sworn in as president. On January 17 she nominates Brownie J. Samukai as defense minister and Antoinette M. Sayeh as finance minister. On January 23 she nominates George Wallace as foreign minister and appoints T. Edward Liberty as acting finance minister pending confirmation of the substantive minister. On January 30 she nominates her cousin Ambullai Johnson as internal affairs minister.
São Tomé and Príncipe: Foreign Minister Ovídio Pequeno resigns. Defense Minister Óscar Sousa is subsequently appointed foreign minister.
Bolivia: Defense Minister Gonzalo Méndez resigns.
Indonesia: Former governor of Sumatera Utara (1978-83) E.W.P. Tambunan dies.
Taiwan: Premier Frank Hsieh resigns. On January 19 Su Tseng-chang is nominated as premier. He is sworn in on January 25 with a new cabinet including James Huang as foreign minister, Joseph Lyu as finance minister, and Lee Yi-yang as interior minister.
United States: Jon Corzine is sworn in as governor of New Jersey.
Australia: Ken Michael is sworn in as governor of Western Australia.
France: The president of the Regional Council of Auvergne, Pierre-Joël Bonté, dies. René Souchon becomes acting president.
Kazakhstan: Natalya Korzhova is appointed finance minister.
Australia: David de Kretser is appointed governor of Victoria, to succeed John Landy on April 7.
Papua New Guinea: Madang Governor James Yali is sentenced to a 12-year prison term. This would automatically make him lose the governorship, but a court rules on January 25 that he remains governor while he appeals his conviction, and that Bunag Kiup is to run the province as chairman of the Provincial Executive Council until the court determines the legitimate acting governor.
Australia: Defense Minister Robert Hill resigns. On January 24 Brendan Nelson is appointed defense minister.
Gabon: President Omar Bongo Ondimba names Jean Eyeghe Ndong as new prime minister. On January 21 the composition of the new cabinet is announced: Jean Ping keeps the foreign portfolio, Paul Toungui finance, and Ali Bongo Ondimba defense, while the new interior minister is André Mba Obame.
Kyrgyzstan: Former acting prime minister (1991-92) Andrey Iordan dies.
Norway: Former governor of Sør-Trøndelag (1974-86) Einar Hole Moxnes dies.
Russia: Aleksandr Berdnikov takes office as head of Altay republic.
Serbia and Montenegro: The president of Kosovo, Ibrahim Rugova, dies. Parliament Speaker Nexhat Daci becomes acting president.
Bolivia: Evo Morales takes office as president. Álvaro García becomes vice president. On January 23 Morales names his cabinet including David Choquehuanca as foreign minister, Walker San Miguel as defense minister, Alicia Muñoz as interior minister, and Luis Alberto Arce as finance minister.
Cambodia: In Senate elections (by members of the local commune councils and of the National Assembly), the Cambodian People's Party wins 69.2% of the vote (45 of 57 elected seats), FUNCINPEC 20.4% (10), and the Sam Rainsy Party 10.3% (2). Two more seats are due to be filled by the National Assembly and two by the king.
Cape Verde: In parliamentary elections, the African Party for the Independence of Cape Verde wins 52.3% of the vote (41 of 72 seats), the Movement for Democracy 44% (29), and the Christian, Independent, and Democratic Union 2.7% (2). Turnout is 52.2%.
Portugal: In presidential elections, former prime minister Aníbal Cavaco Silva (Social Democratic Party) wins 50.6% of the vote, Manuel Alegre (independent) 20.7%, former president Mário Soares (Socialist Party) 14.3%, Jerónimo de Sousa (Communist Party) 8.6%, and Francisco Louçã (Left Bloc) 5.3%. Turnout is 62.6%. Cavaco Silva is to take office March 9.
Canada: In parliamentary elections, the Conservative Party wins 36.3% of the vote (124 of 308 seats), the Liberal Party 30.2% (103), the New Democratic Party 17.5% (29), the Bloc Québécois 10.5% (51), and the Green Party 4.5% (0). Turnout is 64.9%. On January 24 Governor-General Michaëlle Jean asks Conservative leader Stephen Harper to form a government.
African Union: Denis Sassou-Nguesso, president of Congo (Brazzaville), is elected chairman.
Western Sahara: Former governor-general of Spanish Sahara (1974-76) Federico Gómez de Salazar dies.
Palestine: In parliamentary elections, Hamas wins 74 of 132 seats and Fatah 45. Turnout is 78.2%. On January 26 Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia resigns.
Bosnia and Herzegovina: In the Republika Srpska, a no-confidence vote is passed (44-29) against the government of Prime Minister Pero Bukejlovic.
India: The governor of Bihar, Buta Singh, resigns. On January 27 West Bengal Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi is given additional charge of Bihar; he is sworn in on January 31.
Germany: Former minister-president of Nordrhein-Westfalen (1978-98) and president (1999-2004) Johannes Rau dies.
Honduras: Manuel Zelaya is sworn in as president. Milton Jiménez becomes foreign minister, Arístides Mejía defense minister, Jorge Arturo Reina interior minister, and Hugo Noé Pino finance minister.
India: Former chief minister of Manipur (1990-92) R.K. Ranbir Singh dies.
Netherlands Antilles: In parliamentary elections, the Antillean Restructuring Party wins 5 of Curaçao's 14 seats and the New Antilles Movement 3. In Sint Maarten, the National Alliance wins 2 of 3 seats and the Democratic Party of Sint Maarten 1. In Bonaire, the Patriotic Union of Bonaire wins 2 of 3 seats and the Democratic Party of Bonaire 1. In Saba, the Windward Islands People's Movement wins the sole seat, as does the Democratic Party of Sint Eustatius.
Slovakia: Defense Minister Juraj Liska resigns.
India: The chief minister of Karnataka, Dharam Singh, resigns.
India: The governor of Andhra Pradesh, Sushil Kumar Shinde, resigns. On January 29 Orissa Governor Rameshwar Thakur takes additional charge of Andhra Pradesh.
Central African Republic: Former foreign minister (1980-81, 1993-96) Simon Bédaya-Ngaro dies.
Brazil: Former acting governor of Paraná (1982-83) José Hosken de Novaes dies.