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• US President Barack Obama; wife, Michele; and their daughters waving to Obama's supporters, in Chicago … on Wednesday.

PERSONALITIES across the world on Wednesday saluted the re-elected President of the United States of America, Mr. Barack Obama.

The world leaders also pledged their readiness to work with the 51 year-old first black American president endorsed for another four years in the 2012 US poll which rounded off early Wednesday.

Obama of the Democratic Party defeated his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, in a keenly contested race already described as the fiercest presidential battle in the history of US presidential elections.

'I've really enjoyed working with him over these last few years and look forward to working with him again over the next four years,' UK Prime Minister David Cameron told the British Broadcasting Corporation during a visit to a Syrian refugee camp in Jordan on Wednesday.

'Right here in Jordan I'm hearing appalling stories of what is happening inside Syria. One of the first things I want to talk to Barack about is how we must do more to try and solve this crisis.'

'I will continue to work with President Obama to ensure the essential security interests of Israel's citizens,' Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in an e-mail.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a letter to Obama that she 'greatly values' cooperation with the US.

Merkel, in a congratulatory letter, said, 'On your re-election as the President of the United States of America, I sincerely congratulate you.

'I appreciate enormously our numerous meetings and discussions on all issues for the further development of German-American and transatlantic relations, not least about overcoming the global financial and economic crisis.'

Chinese President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao offered their congratulations.  Foreign Ministry spokesman, Hong Lei, said at a briefing in Beijing on Wednesday. China will hold a once-a-decade leadership transition starting this week.

'China is ready to work with the US side to deliver greater benefits to our two peoples and the people of the world,' Hong said.

French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici described Obama as a 'great president' and congratulated him on the re-election.

'We work well with his administration,' Moscovici said on Wednesday, saying 'it has always been helpful to solve the euro- zone crisis, preserve its integrity and favours a balance between austerity and growth.'

Japanese Prime Minister, Yoshihiko Noda, whose country is America's biggest ally in Asia and hosts almost 40,000 of its military personnel, told reporters 'we look forward to continued cooperation.'

South Korean President Lee Myung-Bak welcomed Obama's re-election and called for continued cooperation in stifling North Korea's nuclear threat.

Taiwan President Ma Ying-jeou said he planned to build on relations with the US that were the strongest in 30 years, according to a statement on the website of the island's Presidential Office.

Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard called for US leadership on financial stability and climate change in a statement saluting Obama for his victory.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said in an e-mailed statement that, 'Many challenges lie ahead, from ending the bloodshed in Syria, to getting the Middle East peace process back on track, to promoting sustainable development and tackling the challenges posed by climate change.

'All will require strong multilateral cooperation' and the UN counts on the 'active engagement' of the U.S. on these and other issues.

Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Obama on his re-election. The Kremlin said Putin had reacted 'positively' to Obama's victory over Romney after a campaign that saw the Republican Party challenger refer to Moscow as Washington's chief geopolitical foe.

'Putin has already sent a telegram to Obama congratulating him on the victory and will soon repeat the congratulations in a telephone call,' his spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said.

'We hope that the positive beginnings that have taken hold in Russian-US relations on the world arena will grow in the interests of international security and stability,' Russian news agencies quoted Peskov as saying.

Meanwhile, the re-elected US President's victory ignited all forms of celebration on Wednesday. From the moment he won the poll, Obama trended worldwide on Twitter. Despite a hard-fought campaign in the United States, there was never any contest overseas.

An Associated Press writer, Gregory Katz, capturing the frenzied celebration of Obama across the globe, writes: Gone are the days when President Barack Obama was seen as a youthful, messianic figure capable of magically curing the world's woes. But he remains widely popular, and his triumph reassured many who feared an abrupt change in U.S. policy could spell trouble.

Tom McGrath, president of Republicans Abroad France told AP: 'It's clear that if they could vote, Europe would vote 80 percent for Obama.'

'I think it is good that Obama won,' said Pawel Kukiela, a 30-year-old company consultant in Poland, one of the few countries around the world where Romney has sizeable support. 'He has a good program and I think it will be much better for Obama to continue what he has started.'

A BBC survey during the run-up to the election found remarkable support for an Obama second term. More than 21,000 people in 21 countries were questioned in July, August and September, with residents in all but one country backing Obama. Only Pakistan, where Obama's heavy reliance on drone strikes has been unpopular, preferred Romney.

'These show that Obama differs from other American presidents in his foreign policy,' an Iraqi Army officer, Abu Hussein, told AP.

Praise for Obama was not universal. Pakistani Taliban spokesman Ahsanullah Ahsan said Muslims should not express happiness about Obama's victory.

'We must remember that they are the enemies of Islam, and it is our duty to fight them,' Ahsan told the Associated Press by telephone from an undisclosed location.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, a frequent critic of U.S. policy, did not comment immediately, but the state-run Venezuelan News Agency said Obama returns to power 'with various promises unfulfilled,' including what it described as his failures to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and set up a system to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

But the list of countries with a strong Obama preference in the BBC survey were as diverse as Nigeria, Panama, South Korea, Germany and Brazil.

'I don't think that Europe would have had a good relationship with Mitt Romney,' Jocelyne de betrain told AP. 'It would have been two different points of views, two different planets.'

AP reports that in China, Obama's re-election was good news for people concerned about Romney's vow to label China a currency manipulator. Some feared that would ignite a trade war between the world's two biggest economies.

'His re-election is in line with what the Chinese people want,' said Hong Zihan, a graduate student watching the results at a U.S. Embassy event in Beijing.