March 2021


Brazil: Former governor of Mato Grosso (1979-83) Frederico Carlos Soares Campos dies.
Ukraine: Former foreign minister (1990-94, 2000-03) Anatoliy Zlenko dies.
United States: The Senate confirms Miguel Cardona as education secretary (64-33); he is sworn in on March 2, on which date Gina Raimondo is confirmed as commerce secretary (84-15) and resigns as governor of Rhode Island, Lieutenant Governor Dan McKee being sworn in as governor. Raimondo is sworn in on March 3. On March 10 Marcia Fudge is confirmed as secretary of housing and urban development (66-34), Merrick Garland as attorney general (70-30), and Michael Regan as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (66-34); Fudge is sworn in the same day, Garland and Regan on March 11. On March 15 the Senate confirms Deb Haaland as secretary of the interior (51-40); she is sworn in on March 16. On March 17 Katherine Tai is confirmed as trade representative (98-0); she is sworn in on March 18, when Xavier Becerra is confirmed as secretary of health and human services (50-49) and William Burns as CIA director (voice vote). Becerra is sworn in on March 19. On March 22 Martin J. Walsh is confirmed as labor secretary (68-29) and resigns as mayor of Boston, Kim Janey (the president of the City Council) becoming acting mayor. Burns and Walsh are sworn in on March 23.


Kuwait: The emir appoints the new government (sworn in March 3), with no change in key positions.
Federated States of Micronesia: In parliamentary elections, 10 nonpartisan members are elected (including 4 unopposed). In gubernatorial elections in Chuuk, Alexander Narruhn wins 23.6% of the vote, Ben K. Enlet 21.8%, Mark Mailo 19.0%, Danny Rescue, Jr., 14.6%, and Sabino Asor 11.5%; in the runoff on March 30, Narruhn wins 51.4% and Enlet 48.6%.
New Caledonia: The new government fails for the second time to elect its president when Thierry Santa receives 4 votes, Samuel Hnepeune 3, and Louis Mapou 3.
Trinidad and Tobago: Following the inconclusive results of the January 25 elections in Tobago and the subsequent failure of the new Assembly to elect a chief secretary, parliament adopts (the House of Representatives on February 19 and the Senate on March 2) a law increasing from 12 to 15 the number of seats in the Tobago House of Assembly and providing for the organization of new elections after the delimitation of the new constituencies.
United States: In mayoral primary elections in Saint Louis, Tishaura O. Jones wins 57.0% approval, Cara Spencer 46.4%, Lewis E. Reed 38.5%, and Andrew Jones 14.4%. Turnout is 22.1%. Jones and Spencer will contest the April 6 election.


North Macedonia: Prime Minister Zoran Zaev's government wins a confidence vote in parliament (62-0, the opposition members being absent).




Libya: The prime minister-designate, Abdul Hamid Muhammad Dbeibah, submits his proposed cabinet to the parliament (names not revealed). On March 5 it is announced that Lamia Bosidera has been nominated as foreign minister, Khaled Mazen as interior minister, and Dbeibah himself as defense minister. On March 10 the government wins a confidence vote in the House of Representatives (132-0). Both the internationally recognized prime minister, Fayez al-Sarraj, and the eastern-based Abdullah al-Thani announce their readiness to hand over power to the "Government of National Unity." The new Presidential Council headed by Muhammad Younes Menfi takes office. On March 11 the definite cabinet list is released, including Najla al-Mangoush, not Bosidera, as foreign minister and Khaled al-Mabrouk Abdullah as finance minister; the defense post is left vacant, to be held jointly by the Presidential Council. The new government is sworn in on March 15.
Moldova: The Constitutional Court rejects a request by President Maia Sandu to be allowed to appoint new ministers in the caretaker cabinet of Acting Prime Minister Aureliu Ciocoi.


Ecuador: Interior Minister Patricio Pazmiño resigns. Gabriel Martínez is named to succeed him (formally appointed March 8).
Ghana: The first batch of ministers who have been approved by parliament, including the foreign, defense, and interior ministers (see January 7), are sworn in. On March 11 Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu is named interim finance minister, the substantive nominee Ken Ofori-Atta having not been approved yet. Ofori-Atta is sworn in on March 30.


Côte d'Ivoire: In parliamentary elections, the Rally of Houphouëtists for Democracy and Peace wins 137 of 255 seats, the coalition of Democratic Party of Côte d'Ivoire (PDCI) and Together for Democracy and Sovereignty (EDS) 50, independents 26, the PDCI separately 23, and EDS separately 8. Turnout is 37.9%.
Pakistan: Prime Minister Imran Khan wins a confidence vote in parliament (178 votes; 172 required).
Paraguay: President Mario Abdo Benítez asks all ministers to resign. On March 8 he effects a reshuffle, not affecting the key portfolios.


Jordan: In a cabinet reshuffle, Mazen Faraya is appointed interior minister.


India: Former governor of Gujarat (1998-99) and Rajasthan (1999-2003) Anshuman Singh dies.



Ti.S. Rawat
India: The chief minister of Uttarakhand, Trivendra Singh Rawat, resigns. On March 10 Tirath Singh Rawat is sworn in as new chief minister.
Kosovo: Foreign Minister Meliza Haradinaj resigns. Besnik Tahiri is appointed acting foreign minister.


Côte d'Ivoire: Prime Minister Hamed Bakayoko dies. Patrick Achi was already appointed acting prime minister on March 8, with Téné Birahima Ouattara as acting defense minister. On March 24 President Alassane Ouattara dissolves the government; on March 26 he appoints Achi as prime minister, who takes office March 30.
European Free Trade Association: Former secretary-general (1981-88) Per Kleppe dies.
Guinea-Bissau: Former prime minister (1994-97) Manuel Saturnino da Costa dies.
Somalia: Former president (1991-97) Ali Mahdi Muhammad dies.


Ecuador: Foreign Minister Luis Gallegos resigns. On March 15 Manuel Mejía Dalmau is named foreign minister.
France: Former president of the Regional Council of Poitou-Charentes (1978-80) Francis Hardy dies.


Georgia: The parliament of South Ossetia approves (19-11) the nomination of Gennady Bekoyev as prime minister and he is formally appointed by President Anatoly Bibilov.


Australia: In parliamentary elections in Western Australia, the Labor Party wins 59.9% of the vote (53 of 59 seats), the Liberals 21.3% (2), the Greens 6.9% (0), and the Nationals 4.0% (4). Turnout is 85.5%.


Germany: In state elections in Baden-Württemberg, the Greens win 32.6% of the vote (58 of 154 seats), the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) 24.1% (42), the Social Democratic Party (SPD) 11.0% (19), the Free Democratic Party (FDP) 10.5% (18), the Alternative for Germany (AfD) 9.7% (17), the Left 3.6% (0), and the Free Voters (FW) 3.0% (0); turnout is 63.8%. In Rheinland-Pfalz, the SPD wins 35.7% of the vote (39 of 101 seats), the CDU 27.7% (31), the Greens 9.3% (10), the AfD 8.3% (9), the FDP 5.5% (6), the FW 5.4% (6), and the Left 2.5% (0); turnout is 64.4%.


Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development: Mathias Cormann (Australia) is appointed as secretary-general, to take office on June 1.


Bangladesh: Former prime minister (1988-89) Moudud Ahmed dies.
Moldova: President Maia Sandu nominates Igor Grosu as prime minister. On March 18 a majority in parliament nominates its own candidate, Vladimir Golovatiuc. On March 22 the Constitutional Court declares that the nomination of Grosu was constitutional. On March 23 Grosu nominates a government including Mihai Popsoi as foreign minister, Anatolie Nosatîi as defense minister, Ana Revenco as interior minister, and Natalia Gavrilita as finance minister. The vote for this government fails on March 25 for lack of a quorum.


Brazil: Former governor of Goiás (1998-99) Helenês Cândido dies.
The Netherlands: In parliamentary elections, the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy wins 21.8% of the vote (34 of 150 seats), the Democrats 66 15.0% (24), the Party for Freedom 10.8% (17), the Christian Democratic Appeal 9.5% (15), the Socialist Party 6.0% (9), the Labour Party 5.7% (9), GreenLeft 5.2% (8), Forum for Democracy 5.0% (8), the Party for the Animals 3.8% (6), and the Christian Union 3.4% (5). Turnout is 78.7%.
Paraguay: Parliament rejects a motion to start an impeachment procedure against President Mario Abdo Benítez (36 votes in favour, 42 against; 53 were required).

Tanzania: President John Magufuli dies. On March 19 Vice President Samia Suluhu Hassan is sworn in as president. On March 30 she appoints Finance Minister Philip Mpango as new vice president; he is sworn in on March 31, when in a cabinet reshuffle Mwigulu Nchemba is appointed finance minister and Liberata Mulamula foreign minister.


Curaçao: Prime Minister Eugene Rhuggenaath resigns ahead of elections taking place on March 19. In these, the Movement for the Future of Curaçao wins 28.1% of the vote (9 of 21 seats), the Real Alternative Party 14.1% (4), the National People's Party 12.6% (4), the MAN party 6.5% (2), Curaçao is the Best 5.4% (1), and Work for Curaçao 5.3% (1). Turnout is 73.5%. On March 23 Governor Lucille George-Wout appoints Rutsel Martha and Chester Peterson as informateurs for the purpose of the formation of a government.


Afghanistan: Gen. Yasin Zia is appointed as acting defense minister and Hayatullah Hayat as acting interior minister.
Switzerland: Former Landammann of Uri (1994-96) Alberik Ziegler dies.


United States: Former governor of Delaware (1993) Dale E. Wolf dies.


Congo (Brazzaville): In presidential elections, incumbent Denis Sassou-Nguesso (Congolese Labour Party) wins 88.4% of the vote and Guy Brice Parfait Kolélas (Union of Humanist Democrats) 8.0%. Turnout is 67.6%.
Japan: In gubernatorial elections in Chiba, Toshihito Kumagai wins 70.5% of the vote and Masayuki Seki 19.2%. Turnout is 39.0%.


Kosovo: Parliament elects Glauk Konjufca as speaker (who in that capacity becomes acting president) and approves Albin Kurti as prime minister (67-30), with a government including Donika Gërvalla as foreign minister, Armend Mehaj as defense minister, Xhelal Sveçla as interior minister, and Artane Rizvanolli as finance minister.

Laos: Parliament elects Thongloun Sisoulith as president (161-1) and Phankham Viphavanh as prime minister (158-3). A new cabinet is approved including Bounchom Oubonpaseut as finance minister; Saleumxay Kommasith remains foreign minister, Gen. Chansamone Chanyalath defense minister, and Lt.Gen. Vilay Lakhamfong minister of public security.


Israel: In parliamentary elections, Likud wins 24.2% of the vote (30 of 120 seats), Yesh Atid 13.9% (17), Shas 7.2% (9), Blue and White 6.6% (8), Yamina 6.2% (7), Labor 6.1% (7), United Torah Judaism 5.6% (7), Yisrael Beiteinu 5.6% (7), the Religious Zionist Party 5.1% (6), the Joint List 4.8% (6), New Hope 4.7% (6), Meretz 4.6% (6), and the United Arab List 3.8% (4). Turnout is 67.4%.

Russia: President Vladimir Putin dismisses the governor of Penza oblast, Ivan Belozertsev. On March 26 Putin appoints Oleg Melnichenko as acting governor.
United Kingdom: The first minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, survives a no-confidence motion in parliament (defeated 65-31 with 27 abstentions).


Slovakia: Foreign Minister Ivan Korcok resigns. On March 25 Defense Minister Jaroslav Nad is named acting foreign minister. On March 28 Prime Minister Igor Matovic announces his resignation and his decision to switch office with Finance Minister Eduard Heger. On March 30 Matovic formally resigns and President Zuzana Caputová asks Heger to form a government.
United Arab Emirates: Finance Minister Sheikh Hamdan ibn Rashid Al Maktum dies.


Canada: In parliamentary elections in Newfoundland and Labrador (by mail only, after the in-person voting originally scheduled for February 13 was cancelled, the mail-in deadline being ultimately extended to March 25), the Liberal Party wins 48.2% of the vote (22 of 40 seats), the Progressive Conservative Party 38.8% (13), the New Democratic Party 8.0% (2), and independents 4.6% (3). Turnout is about 48%.


Liechtenstein: Daniel Risch is elected head of government (19 of 25 votes). He also becomes finance minister in the new government (sworn in the same day), while Dominique Hasler is foreign minister and Sabine Monauni interior minister.
Turkmenistan: Former foreign minister of the Turkmen S.S.R. (1979-85) Nazar Suyunov dies.
United States: Former labor secretary (1985-87) William E. Brock dies.


Brazil: The governor of Santa Catarina, Carlos Moisés da Silva, is suspended for up to 120 days from March 30, Vice Governor Daniela Reinehr becoming acting governor.
Spain: The parliament of Catalonia fails, in a first round of voting, to elect a president of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès receiving 42 votes in favour and 61 against with 32 abstentions (68 votes in favour required). A second attempt on March 30 fails with the same numbers (though a simple majority would have been sufficient).


Cyprus: Sir Roy Austen-Smith, former administrator of the British Sovereign Base Areas (1976-78), dies.


Armenia: Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan says he will resign in April to permit early parliamentary elections (scheduled for June 20).
Madagascar: Former foreign minister (1972-75) and president (1975-93, 1997-2002) Didier Ratsiraka dies.


Albania: Former prime minister (1997) Bashkim Fino dies.
Australia: In a cabinet reshuffle, Peter Dutton is appointed as defence minister and Karen Andrews as home affairs minister.

Brazil: Foreign Minister Ernesto Araújo and Defense Minister Fernando Azevedo e Silva resign. In a cabinet reshuffle, Carlos Alberto Franco França is appointed foreign minister and Walter Souza Braga Netto defense minister.
Pakistan: Hammad Azhar is named to replace Abdul Hafeez Shaikh as finance minister.


Aruba: Prime Minister Evelyn Wever-Croes resigns.


Egypt: Former prime minister (1996-99, 2011-12) Kamal Ganzouri dies.