Veteran Kurdish politician Fouad Massoum has been elected president of Iraq.
The 76-year-old replaces Jalal Talabani in the post.
Since 2003 Iraq, as part of an informal power sharing agreement, has a Kurdish president, Shi’ite prime minister and Sunni speaker of parliament.
Massoum comes to office as Iraq faces deep divisions exacerbated by growing violence that is ripping the country apart.
On Wednesday a bus carrying prisoners from a military base in Taji to Baghdad came under bomb and gun attack.
Fifty-two prisoners lost their lives along with nine policemen.
Much of Iraq’s recent carnage is linked to sectarian divisions which has seen Sunni militants seize large swathes of the country and declared an Islamic state.