World Bulletin / News Desk
George Weah emerged from Liberia's slums to become a superstar footballer in the 1990s, and has spent the last 13 years building political credibility to match his status as a sporting icon.
"I am a human being, I strive to be excellent, and I can be successful," Weah told journalists ahead of his inauguration, countering critics who say he is ill-prepared for office after serving in the Senate for just over three years.
The first African player to win both FIFA's World Player of the Year trophy and the Ballon d'Or, Weah was largely absent from Liberia during the 1989-2003 civil war period, playing for a string of top-flight European teams including Paris Saint-Germain and AC Milan, and later Chelsea.
Weah becomes the 25th president of the west African nation, taking power from President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf after 12 years and completing its first democratic transition since 1944.
"We love him, we just love him," said mature student Moses Adams, as he watched Weah and his veterans' team play a friendly game against the army ahead of his inauguration.
"I expect big change. I expect our lives to be better. I expect prices of things to go down, and I expect schools to be given priority," Adams said.
Weah faces the challenges of a depressed export economy highly reliant on rubber and iron ore, and has pledged to make the country more self-sufficient by transforming the agriculture sector and providing vocational training.
Sirleaf maintained a peace desperately needed after a war that killed a quarter of a million people, but extreme poverty remains the norm for most Liberians.
One of the most popular travel guides, Lonely Planet, has included Albania and Kosovo on its list of the ten best holiday destinations in Europe for 2018.
‘They worked among the snake-charmers and belly-dancers of Marrakech. I christened them Kesh Angels and gave them heart-shaped sunglasses’
Istanbul hosts Turkey’s most visited museums with over 2 million visitors in first 4 months of 2018
Arab journalists having fruitful discussions with Turkish counterparts while enjoying spring in the megapolis
An intensive program of cultural activities in both countries for next year is being prepared, says Russian ambassador
Bosnia tells people about hundreds of mosques, religious buildings destroyed by Serb and Croat forces during 1990s wars
Turkey's biggest festival - the Istanbul Youth Festival (IGF) - targeted at young people kicks off at the Eurasia Show and Art Center.
Cat research center in Van province decides to give special treat to unique felines that sport silky fur and lion-like walk
Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency signs agreement to restore Fatih Hammam in capital Pristina
After more than 4 years in prison, award-winning photojournalist, now 31, faces possible death sentence.
Turkey, China have potential to further improve ties, says Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Kurtulmus
Turkish language course introduced to curriculum in Kuala Lumpur school, a first in Malaysia
Turkey's culture and tourism minister says around 250,000 Chinese tourists visited Turkey in 2017
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'The event created an atmosphere of peace and bridged international divides,' Yunus Emre Institute's US director says