Bolivia's new interim president, Eduardo Rodriguez, has vowed to call early elections and says he wants to help heal a nation that has been paralyzed by weeks of protests.

Mr. Rodriguez, Bolivia's Supreme Court chief, was sworn in late Thursday after lawmakers meeting in an emergency session approved the resignation of President Carlos Mesa.

In an early Friday morning address to legislators, Mr. Rodriguez declared he would work to help restore social stability, saying Bolivians deserve better.

Mr. Rodriguez also promised to hold early elections, but he did not specify a date. Under Bolivia's constitution, Mr. Rodriguez must call presidential elections within 180 days.

Outgoing President Mesa submitted his resignation Monday, saying he could no longer lead the impoverished Andean nation in the face of continuing protests.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.