New Zealand leader recovers with mac-n-cheese after birth

New Zealand leader recovers with mac-n-cheese after birth

New Zealand leader recovers with mac-n-cheese after birth

Meanwhile, speculation will also likely turn to baby names, with no clues provided in Thursday's announcements.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand gave birth to her first child, a girl, on Thursday, making her the first world leader in nearly three decades to give birth while in office.

The birth capped an eventful year for Ardern who became prime minister last October, three months after inheriting the leadership of the Labour Party when it was languishing in the polls.

Speaking to media from the town of Nelson, Ardern's parents Ross and Laurell Ardern said the baby had been very active during the night and had kept their daughter awake.

Former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said in an email to The Associated Press that it was a very happy day for Ardern and Gayford and that New Zealanders had taken the news of the pregnancy in their stride.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern already did the latter when she announced she was pregnant with her first child earlier this year.

"Not only is she incredible at what she does, this morning she made me macaroni and cheese because she heard me mention a wee craving yesterday", Ms Ardern posted.

In a striking coincidence, the new baby was born on what would have been Benazir Bhutto's 65th birthday.

Ms Ardern's office said the shawl wrapped around her daughter in the photograph on her social media post was knitted by Clarke Gayford's mother.

She thanked everyone for their kindness and wishes.

The prime minister's office can confirm that she recently received a private congratulatory message from the Queen on the birth of her baby.

"We're all doing really well thanks to the wonderful team at Auckland City Hospital". "I am not the first woman to work and have a baby; there are many women who have done this before". Ardern is the first world leader to take maternity leave with deputy Winston Peters taking over her duties for the six weeks she is off.

"For New Zealand, these events and the way our country has greeted them will be seen as inspirational by all who advocate for gender equality and women's empowerment", Clark said in a statement.

Ardern on Thursday became just the second elected world leader to give birth while holding office.

"This is a sign of our maturity as a country and its acceptance that combining career and family is a choice which women are free to make", she wrote.

"Attitudes have changed a lot on these issues since I entered New Zealand politics, and that's a good thing", she said.

"I also have huge respect for anyone who is a full-time mum or dad, and not only parents but people who are caring for family members".

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