Brazil: The following new governors take office: Arnóbio Marques de Almeida Júnior (Acre), Teotônio Brandão Vilela Filho (Alagoas), Jaques Wagner (Bahia), Cid Ferreira Gomes (Ceará), José Roberto Arruda (Distrito Federal), Jackson Kepler Lago (Maranhão), André Puccinelli (Mato Grosso do Sul), Ana Júlia de Vasconcelos Carepa (Pará), Eduardo Henrique Accioly Campos (Pernambuco), Sérgio de Oliveira Cabral Santos Filho (Rio de Janeiro), Yeda Rorato Crusius (Rio Grande do Sul), José Serra (São Paulo), and Marcelo Déda Chagas (Sergipe).
Mexico: Andrés Granier Melo takes office as governor of Tabasco.
Switzerland: Micheline Calmy-Rey takes office as president. Isabelle Chassot becomes president of the Council of State of Fribourg, Martin Schmid president of the government of Graubünden, Laurent Schaffter president of the government of Jura, Yvonne Schärli-Gerig Schultheiss of Luzern, Erhard Meister president of the government of Schaffhausen, Peter Gomm Landammann of Solothurn, Charles-Louis Rochat president of the Council of State of Vaud, and Joachim Eder Landammann of Zug.
United Nations: Ban Ki Moon takes office as secretary-general.
United States: Butch Otter takes office as governor of Idaho, Jim Gibbons as governor of Nevada, and Eliot Spitzer as governor of New York.
Virgin Islands (U.S.): John deJongh takes office as governor.
Austria: Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel is sworn in as interior minister.
North Korea: Foreign Minister Paek Nam Sun dies. First Deputy Foreign Minister Kang Sok Ju becomes acting foreign minister.
United States: Adrian Fenty takes office as mayor of the District of Columbia and Charlie Crist as governor of Florida.
United States: Former commerce secretary (1987-89) C. William Verity dies.
Venezuela: President Hugo Chávez announces that Jorge Rodríguez will replace José Vicente Rangel as vice president and that Pedro Carreño will be the new interior minister. On January 4 Chávez names Rodrigo Cabezas as finance minister. The new government is sworn in on January 8.
Bosnia and Herzegovina: Nikola Spiric is designated as prime minister. He is confirmed by parliament (29-6) on January 11.
Fiji: Military leader Voreqe Bainimarama returns power to the president, Ratu Josefa Iloilo, and announces the resignation of interim prime minister Jona Senilagakali. On January 5 Iloilo swears in Bainimarama as interim prime minister. Ratu Epeli Nailatikau is sworn in as foreign minister on January 8 and Mahendra Chaudhry as finance minister on January 9.
South Africa: Former state president (1979-84) Marais Viljoen dies.
United States: Deval Patrick is sworn in as governor of Massachusetts.
India: Former maharaja of Tehri Garhwal (1946-47) Tika Manabendra Shah dies.
Kazakhstan: Prime Minister Daniyal Akhmetov resigns. On January 10 the parliament approves Karim Masimov as prime minister. Akhmetov is named defense minister, while Marat Tazhin becomes foreign minister.
Federated States of Micronesia: Sebastian Anefal is inaugurated as governor of Yap. In Kosrae, Speaker Lyndon H. Jackson becomes acting governor on January 9.
United States: Ted Strickland is sworn in as governor of Ohio.
Czech Republic: President Václav Klaus appoints a new government headed by Mirek Topolánek. Like the one rejected by Klaus in December, it includes Karel Schwarzenberg as foreign minister, Vlasta Parkanová as defense minister, Miroslav Kalousek as finance minister, and Ivan Langer remaining interior minister. The government wins a vote of confidence in parliament on January 19 (100-97 with 1 abstention and 2 members absent).
Japan: The defense agency is upgraded to a ministry; the agency director-general, Fumio Kyuma, becomes defense minister.
Switzerland: Former Landammann of Solothurn (1992, 1997, 2002) Rolf Ritschard dies.
United States: Mike Beebe is sworn in as governor of Arkansas and Bill Ritter as governor of Colorado.
Mexico: Former governor of Tabasco (1971-76) Mario Trujillo García dies.
Nicaragua: Daniel Ortega takes office as president. Jaime Morales becomes vice president. The cabinet is announced on January 11, including Samuel Santos as foreign minister, Alberto Guevara as finance minister, and Ana Isabel Morales as interior minister; no defense minister is named (Juan Umaña Loáisiga becoming administrator of the ministry).
Nigeria: In a cabinet reshuffle, Thomas Aguiyi-Ironsi becomes defense minister.
Austria: Alfred Gusenbauer is sworn in as chancellor with a cabinet including Norbert Darabos as defense minister, Günther Platter as interior minister, and Wilhelm Molterer as finance minister; Ursula Plassnik remains foreign minister.
Bangladesh: President Iajuddin Ahmed resigns as chief adviser (head of caretaker government). Fazlul Haque becomes acting chief adviser. On January 12 Fakhruddin Ahmed is sworn in as new chief adviser. On January 14 he distributes portfolios among the advisers, giving finance to Mirza Azizul Islam, while keeping other key portfolios to himself. On January 18 Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury is sworn in as adviser and given the foreign affairs portfolio.
Indonesia: Ratu Atut Chosiyah is sworn in as governor of Banten.
Tanzania: Bernard Membe is appointed foreign minister.
United States: Chet Culver is sworn in as governor of Iowa.
Russia: Aslan Tkhakushinov is sworn in as president of Adygeya. On January 15 he appoints Vladimir Samozhenkov as acting prime minister. The local Council of State approves Samozhenkov as prime minister on January 17.
Ecuador: Rafael Correa takes office as president, with Lenín Moreno as vice president and with the cabinet as finalized on December 27. Defense Minister Guadalupe Larriva dies in a helicopter crash on January 24; on January 28 Economy Minister Ricardo Patiño temporarily takes the position, while on January 30 Lorena Escudero is named as new defense minister.
Italy: Former president of Sardegna (1958-66) Efisio Corrias dies.
Kyrgyzstan: President Kurmanbek Bakiyev renominates Feliks Kulov as prime minister. Parliament rejects him on January 18, Bakiyev submits the candidacy again on January 19, and parliament disapproves again on January 25. On January 26 Bakiyev nominates Azim Isabekov, who is approved by parliament (57-4) on January 29.
Federated States of Micronesia: In the gubernatorial runoff in Kosrae, Robert J. Weilbacher defeats Yosiwo P. George, 52%-48%.
United States: Martin O'Malley is sworn in as governor of Maryland. Sheila Dixon succeeds O'Malley as mayor of Baltimore.
Albania: Interior Minister Sokol Olldashi submits his resignation, which is accepted by Prime Minister Sali Berisha the following day.
French Polynesia: The government of President Gaston Tong Sang survives a no-confidence vote (26 votes for the motion; 29 votes were necessary).
Botswana: Phandu Skelemani becomes defense minister and Charles Tibone home affairs minister in a cabinet reshuffle.
Congo (Brazzaville): Paul Chauvet, former governor-general (1951-57) and high commissioner (1957-58) of French Equatorial Africa, dies.
Gabon: Prime Minister Jean Eyeghe Ndong submits the resignation of his government. He is reappointed on January 24. The government named on January 25 is unchanged in the key portfolios.
India: E.S.L. Narasimhan is appointed as governor of Chhattisgarh (taking office January 25) and K. Sankaranarayanan as governor of Nagaland (to take office February 3).
Madagascar: President Marc Ravalomanana names the interior minister, Gen. Charles Rabemananjara, as prime minister. In the new government sworn in on January 25, Harison Randriarimanana becomes finance minister; Rabemananjara keeps the interior ministry.
Japan: In gubernatorial elections in Ehime, incumbent Moriyuki Kato is reelected, defeating Tsukasa Wada. Turnout is 43.1%. In Miyazaki (turnout 64.9%), Hideo Higashikokubaru is elected, defeating Hidesaburo Kawamura and Tetsuji Mochinaga; he takes office on January 23. In Yamanashi (turnout 66.2%), Shomei Yokouchi defeats incumbent Takahiko Yamamoto.
Serbia: In parliamentary elections, the Serbian Radical Party wins 28.6% of the vote (81 of 250 seats), the Democratic Party 22.7% (64), the coalition led by the Democratic Party of Serbia 16.6% (47), G17 Plus 6.8% (19), the Socialist Party 5.6% (16), the coalition led by the Liberal Democratic Party 5.3% (15), and the Alliance of Vojvodina Hungarians 1.3% (3). Turnout is 60.6%.
Bolivia: In a cabinet reshuffle, Alfredo Rada replaces Alicia Muñoz as interior minister.
Turkey: Former foreign minister (1997-2002) Ismail Cem dies.
The Gambia: In parliamentary elections, the ruling Alliance for Patriotic Reorientation and Construction wins 42 of 48 seats, the United Democratic Party 4, the National Alliance for Democracy and Development 1, and independents 1. Turnout is 41.7%.
Israel: A Knesset committee votes 13-11 to accept President Moshe Katsav's request to suspend himself from duties for three months. Knesset Speaker Dalia Itzik becomes acting president.
Russia: President Vladimir Putin accepts the resignation of the head of administration of Ust-Ordynsky Buryat autonomous okrug, Valery Maleyev, and assigns his duties to the governor of Irkutsk oblast, Aleksandr Tishanin, who will hold both offices until the merger of the two regions on Jan. 1, 2008.
Congo (Kinshasa): The provincial assemblies elect the following governors: Richard Ndambu Wolang (Bandundu), Simon Mbatshi Batshia (Bas-Congo), José Makila Sumanda (Équateur), Moïse Katumbi Chapwe (Katanga), André Kimbuta Yango (Kinshasa), Didier Manara Linga (Maniema), Julien Paluku Kahongya (Nord-Kivu), Médard Autsai Asenga (Orientale), Célestin Cibalonza Byaterana (Sud-Kivu). Elections in Kasaï Occidental and Kasaï Oriental are to be held in February.
Sri Lanka: In a cabinet reshuffle, Rohitha Bogollagama becomes foreign minister and Karu Jayasuriya home affairs minister.
African Union: John Agyekum Kufuor, president of Ghana, is elected chairman.
Chad: Former prime minister (1995-97) Djimasta Koibla dies.
Ukraine: Foreign Minister Borys Tarasyuk resigns. Volodymyr Ohryzko becomes acting foreign minister.
India: Former chief minister of Nagaland (1969-74, 1986-88) and governor of Himachal Pradesh (1983-86) Hokishe Sema dies.
Philippines: Hermogenes Ebdane, Jr., is appointed defense secretary.