Somalia’s Parliament elected a new President for the country on Monday, after Hassan Sheikh Mohamud beat out his main rival, the incumbent Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, to become the leader of the troubled East African nation.

The result was a surprise, as Mr. Ahmed had been the favourite heading into the vote, which is part of a process intended to establish a stable government in the war-torn country.

A first round of voting knocked out most of the 22 contenders, eventually leaving just Mr. Mohamud, a relative newcomer to politics and a former university dean, to contend against Ahmed, who has held the job since 2009. There were no female candidates.

In the final round of voting, Mr. Mohamud, who campaigned on a platform of fighting radicalisation and restoring law and order, received 190 votes to Mr. Ahmed’s 79.

The winner will now have to appoint a premier to form a cabinet, which could take some weeks.

This was the first time a Somali President was elected inside the country since the 1980s.

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