| GEO World|
| Nepal's new PM sworn in after Maoist walkout|
| Updated at: 1425 PST, Monday, May 25, 2009|
KATHMANDU: A moderate leftist leader was sworn in as the new prime minister of Nepal on Monday, after the Maoist who previously led the government resigned three weeks ago over a dispute with the army.
Madhav Kumar Nepal, of the Communist Party of Nepal-UML, took up the role in a ceremony at the president's office in the capital Kathmandu. He was elected unopposed by the parliament on the weekend following Maoist chief Prachanda's resignation.
Prachanda, who led the Maoist rebels in a decade-long civil war until 2006, came to power in elections last year but resigned after his bid to fire the army chief failed. Madhav Kumar Nepal, 56-year-old political veteran, took the oath of office from President Ram Baran Yadav.
"I will carry out my duty by remaining within the boundary of Nepalese law without any fear, discrimination and ill intentions," he said as dignitaries and foreign diplomats looked on. He became the second prime minister of the country after winning the backing of an alliance of 22 parties that holds 350 seats in the 601-member constituent assembly.
The Maoists have said they would boycott the new parliament and vowed to keep up street protests against the president, who blocked their attempt to sack the Army Chief. The political crisis raised fears about the future of the 2006 peace agreement, which ended the bloody civil war.