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Uzbek President Islam Karimov Sworn In

Uzbek President Islam Karimov has been sworn into office for a fourth term.

The inauguration ceremony was held in parliament on April 10 and attended by the chairman of the Constitutional Court, cabinet ministers, and foreign diplomats.

The 77-year-old Karimov received more than 90 percent of the vote in the March 29 election in spite of a constitutional restriction against any individual serving more than two terms in office.

Vote monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe said the poll lacked a genuine opposition to Karimov and was marred by legal and organizational shortcomings.

Karimov has ruled Uzbekistan since 1989, two years before it gained independence in the collapse of the Soviet Union. During that time, he has neutralized most of his political opposition.