BELGRADE, May 31. /TASS/. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, elected on April 3, took the oath before Serbia’s National Assembly (parliament) and assumed the office of president for his second five-year term, a TASS correspondent reported from the scene.
"I solemnly swear to devote all my strength to preserving the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Serbia, including Kosovo and Metohija as its integral part, as well as the exercise of human rights and freedoms, to respect and protect the constitution and law, to preserve peace and prosperity for all citizens of the Republic of Serbia and to perform my duties conscientiously and responsibly," Vucic said, after which he crossed himself and added, "So help me God."
After Vucic recited the oath of office, the Serbian national anthem was played in the parliamentary auditorium.
Aleksandar Vucic took the oath of office on the ancient Serbian Cyrillic manuscript, the 12th century Miroslav Gospel. The President took the oath by placing his hand on the constitution, which was in its turn placed on the exact copy of the ancient folio. Miroslav Gospel, a handwritten aprakos gospel, created around 1180, is the oldest Cyrillic book of Serbian written language. It is kept in the National Museum of Serbia in Belgrade, and in 2005 UNESCO included the ancient manuscript in the Memory of the World Register.
The ceremony was attended by former Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic, member of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina Milorad Dodik, Serbian Patriarch Porfirije, representatives of political parties, deputies and foreign ambassadors. Speaker Ivica Dacic presided over the 11th Special Sitting of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia.
Several thousand Serbian citizens gathered in front of the Assembly building to greet Vucic with applause. Aleksandar Vucic won the first round of the 3 April presidential election with 58.59%.