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Interim Guinea-Bissau president sworn in

March 4, 2009 at 7:28 AM

BISSAU, Guinea-Bissau, March 4 (UPI) -- New interim Guinea-Bissau President Raimundo Perreira says the West African nation's people must help him restore stability to the country.

Perreira, Guinea-Bissau's National Assembly speaker, was sworn into office Tuesday, one day after the assassination of former President Joao Bernardo Vieira. At the ceremony, Perreira called on residents of the former Portuguese colony to aid him in his efforts to heal the wounds of Vieira's slaying by army soldiers, the Voice of America reported.

Perreira will lead Guinea-Bissau until presidential elections can be held within 60 days, officials said.

Life had returned to normal Tuesday in Bissau, the U.S. broadcaster said, with fewer military checkpoints and more businesses open.

Jose Zamora Induta, the country's naval commander, told reporters that contrary to initial reports, the president's killing wasn't related to Sunday's assassination of Vieira's rival, armed forces chief of staff Gen. Batista Tagme Na Waie, and instead was carried out by an isolated group of soldiers.

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