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Moon Jae-in, a former refugee, special forces soldier and human rights lawyer, has been sworn in as president of South Korea.
“I will become the president who makes a country that people can be proud of and will boldly break from the past practices. From this day, the country will start anew,” Mr Moon said at his inauguration ceremony.
Mr Moon’s swearing in puts the wraps on a period of prolonged political tumult set off by the corruption scandal that led to the impeachment in March of his predecessor Park Geun-hye.
His rout of his two main rivals in this week’s special election also puts an end to nine years of conservative rule in South Korea. Mr Moon, who has a reputation for being a reliable if uncharismatic leader, has promised a new approach to North Korea based on engagement as well as increased pressure that may put him at odds with the Trump administration in the US.
Domestically, Mr Moon will need to restore public trust in political institutions and facilitate the recovery of an economy saddled with substantial household debt, stagnant wages and high youth unemployment.
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