Many ordinary citizens and world leaders alike are welcoming U.S. President Barack Obama's administration, and wondering what effect it will have on international relations.
In a congratulatory message, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said he has great optimism about the presidency of Barack Obama, particularly his goals aimed at fighting climate change and finding alternative energy sources. He also lauded Mr. Obama's aims to work on improving agriculture and availability of clean water, fight hunger, and improve education.
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak urged Mr. Obama to make the crisis in the Middle East an "urgent priority." Mr. Mubarak has been involved in efforts to negotiate a truce between Israel and Hamas militants in Gaza.
Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said Mr. Obama should change U.S. policy in the Middle East to improve America's image in the region.
Cuban President Raul Castro Wednesday said Mr. Obama "seems like a good good man," and wished him good luck. Mr. Obama has pledged to ease limits on the number of trips Cuban-Americans can make to Cuba, and on the money they can send to relatives on the island.