Alassane Ouattara was inaugurated as Ivory Coast’s new president on Saturday.
The country has gripped by a decade of instability and six months of violence following November’s presidential vote.
His predecessor, Laurent Gbagbo, had refused to accept defeat, creating the five-month political deadlock.
Ouattara told guests that it was a historic moment for the people of Ivory Coast.
“Yes, today is the beginning of a new era for all of us, that marks our common will to write a new page in our country’s history.”
He appealed to Ivorians to stand united and forgive their former foes.
But allegations of crimes against humanity on both sides as his forces battled troops loyal to Gbagbo over the last six months may make that task harder.