UN appoints Antonio Guterres as new secretary general
The UN General Assembly on Thursday formally appointed Antonio Guterres as the new secretary general of the United Nations, replacing Ban Ki-moon.
The 193 member states adopted by acclamation a resolution appointing the former prime minister of Portugal for a five-year term beginning January 1.
The socialist politician, who also served as UN refugee chief for a decade, is expected to play a more prominent role as the world’s diplomat-in-chief than Ban, the South Korean former foreign minister who will step down after two five-year terms.
Guterres won unanimous support from the UN Security Council during a vote last week that capped the most transparent campaign ever held at the United Nations for the top post.
The 67-year-old polyglot campaigned on a pledge to promote human rights and enact reforms within the UN system, seen as clunky and too slow to respond to unfolding disasters.
His appointment comes at a time of global anxiety over the ongoing war in Syria, the refugee crisis and raging conflicts in South Sudan and Yemen.
The Security Council is deadlocked over Syria after two draft resolutions were defeated in separate votes over the weekend, one of which was vetoed by Damascus ally Russia.
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Congratulations Antonio Guterres!
Antonio Guterres appears to be a dead man walking at the age of 67, taking the high end bureaucratic office of UNSG at the time the World is at boiling point with crises in Syria, South Sudan and Yemen and World-wide calls for prosecution of past genocidal rulers including Sri Lanka.
A promise of good governance in Sri Lanka which kept the international calls for justice at bay has come to an end in less than two years from 08 Jan 2015.
With an active ISIS, whoever climbs the throne in the United States on 04 Nov 2016 will be compelled to wage war on the occupants of oil rich lands. Human Rights will be prominent in the World’s agenda in the immediate and future years.
I do not envy Mr Guterres’ job.