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Young World Leaders

Mikhail Saakashvili aged 36 was elected president of Georgia on Sunday to become one of the youngest democratically elected national leaders. He is a lawyer, speaks four languages and has a Dutch wife.

On the southern border of Georgia is Azerbaijan where in December 2003 Heidar Aliyev, aged 80 died. When he stepped down from office in October, he was the oldest democratically elected president in the world.

Australia's youngest prime minister was John Watson who was 37 when prime minister in 1904. A founder of the Australian Labor Party, Watson was only in office for four months. He was expelled from the Labor party for his support of conscription in 1917. You can read more about the history of Australia's leaders on the National Archives site (www.naa.gov.au).

The youngest US president was Theodore Roosevelt aged 42 in 1901 and in office for 8 years. He became president following the assassination of President McKinley. For the details of US presidents, go to the history section of the White House site (www.whitehouse.gov)

Posted Tuesday, 6 January 2004

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