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World media consider Obama tasks

A pedestrian looks at a TV image of Obama
The world's media reacts to Obama's victory

A momentous event in US history, a chance for change in the world, but many obstacles still to overcome were the main themes in reactions by a selection of the world's media to Barack Obama's victory.

Two Russian papers highlighted the almost hypnotic appeal Obama has to American voters, while one said he would pay more attention to democratic freedoms in Russia. An Israeli paper said Obama would support Israel. Others said they hoped he would revive America's global reputation.

Papers in China described Obama's "glorious" achievement and the transformation in American people's thinking. One also looked forward to continued stability in relations with China, but another said the US would continue to defend its own interests at all costs.

RUSSIAN MEDIA

CORRESPONDENT ON CHANNEL ONE TV

Obama has become a kind of new religion for some of his supporters.

YEKATERINA SAZHNEVA IN MOSKOVSKIY KOMSOMOLETS

It is not important whether the "black prince" will do anything at all - today poor Americans, as well as middle-class Americans and even rich liberals, simply want this man.

YEVGENIY SHESTAKOV IN ROSSIYSKAYA GAZETA

How did the black candidate, who is not yet 50, ensure such support? I hazard a guess that the answer lies in two words: "American dream."

MAKSIM MAKARYCHEV IN ROSSIYSKAYA GAZETA

Experts are convinced that Obama will pay more attention to Russian internal political problems such as political pluralism and freedom of speech.

MIDDLE EAST PRESS

Pan-Arab

AL-QUDS AL-ARABI

Israelis will not only feel sorry that their dear friend Bush is going. They will feel sorry because they did not exploit the time of Bush's administration and its hegemony over the Arabs in reaching a peace agreement.

Israel

YORAM ETTINGER IN YNET.COM

Obama's victory is the biggest since 1964 but the challenges and obstacles in his way are at least the greatest since 1930.

AKIVA ELDAR IN HA'ARETZ.COM

We can assume the new president will not forsake Israel. Two Middle East advisers whom the new president chose to be by his side [are] both Jews who are lovers of Israel and of peace.

HA'ARETZ

We must hope that over the next four years, both major parties and both houses of Congress will help the new president rehabilitate the status of a superpower that remains unrivalled in its influence over the peace and welfare of all humanity.

PROF AVIAD KLEINBERG IN YEDIOT AHARONOT

George Bush was among the worst US presidents. The new president will have to convince many people that the rudder is again in good hands.

CHINESE PRESS

LO FUNG IN APPLE DAILY

Regardless of whether Obama wins, he has written a glorious page for himself, and also written a new page in the history of black participation in politics.

CHEN BING IN XIN JING BAO

The 2008 election has made Americans re-examine the four cornerstones of American culture - war, religion, race and wealth. The Iraq war and financial tsunami have made Americans come to their senses. The presidential election and accompanying financial crisis have spurred a transformation in the thinking of Americans.

WEN WEI PO

It is clear that China and the US already have important common interests... and the general trend of maintaining stability in Sino-US relations and strengthening bilateral cooperation will not change.

KUAI ZHEYUAN IN HONG KONG COMMERCIAL DAILY

US national interests... are the first things that they will protect and maintain. They will still disregard the national interests of other countries and sacrifice the people of other countries using all possible means. (4 November)

CHEN YONGJIE IN 21ST CENTURY BUSINESS HERALD

Obama needs to honour his campaign promises, but he must ensure that the situation in Iraq does not worsen after troops are withdrawn, while finding a dignified exit strategy for the Americans.

KENYA

ARAP TANUI ON RADIO KASS FM

He is a born leader and we say congratulations President Obama, congratulations Kenya and thank you Africa because they have produced a leader. Let us pray, because evil also does its thing.

PRESENTER ON KENYAN RADIO CAPITAL FM

It is nothing short of a party in Kibera [Nairobi slum, populated by ethnic Luos, kin of Obama's late father].

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.



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Electoral College votes

Winning post 270
Obama - Democrat
365
McCain - Republican
173
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