Mariano Rajoy sworn in as Spanish PM
Updated: 2011-12-22 07:05
MADRID - Mariano Rajoy was sworn in as the new prime minister of Spain by King Juan Carlos II at the royal residence of the Palacio de la Zarzuela on Wednesday.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy leaves after announcing the names of the members of his cabinet at Madrid's Moncloa Palace December 21, 2011.
Rajoy was elected after his right wing Popular Party won an overall majority in the general election held last month, gaining 186 seats in the 350-seat-Congress.
He was confirmed as Spain's new prime minister by Congress on Tuesday following a two-day investiture debate in which he set out the program of his new government, which will include wide-scale spending cuts in order to reduce the country's deficit by 16.5 billion euros ($21.7 billion).
The final act of protocol before Rajoy took office saw him swear an oath of loyalty to King and country on a crucifix, a bible and a copy of Spain's 1980 constitution.
In doing so, he became the sixth prime minister of Spanish democracy following the death of General Franco in 1975 and the second member of his party, following Jose Maria Aznar, to lead his country.
Spain's previous prime ministers since 1975 are Adolfo Suarez, Leopaldo Caldo-Sotero Bustelo, Felipe Gonzalez, Aznar and Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.
Following the investiture, Rajoy took up residence at the Palacio de la Moncloa as did his predecessors.