UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United Nations kicked off the choice of its subsequent secretary-general on Friday, asking the 193 U.N. member states to submit candidates to be the world group’s chief diplomat and working officer.
The method formally started with a joint letter signed nearly by Basic Meeting President Volkan Bozkir and Britain’s U.N. Ambassador Barbara Woodward, this month’s president of the Safety Council opening the nomination of candidates.
Secretary-Basic Antonio Guterres, whose present time period expires on Dec. 31, introduced final month that he’s in search of a second five-year time period.
Honduras’ U.N. Ambassador Mary Elizabeth Flores Flake additionally despatched a letter to all U.N. member nations saying there has by no means been a feminine secretary-general and asking them to “current girls candidates.”
“I’m scripting this communication from a spot of conviction, the place standing for equal rights makes a distinction in creating a good and equitable group, and opening alternatives for girls all around the world,” Flores Flake mentioned.
A 2015 Basic Meeting decision, which was adopted by consensus, modified the beforehand largely secretive choice of the secretary-general to a extra open and clear course of. It allowed the world physique’s member states for the primary time to see primary details about all candidates, together with their resumes, and to satisfy and query them at open classes.
Simply earlier than Christmas, a bunch of 25 nations from all areas referred to as the Accountability Coherence and Transparency group wrote to the Basic Meeting and Safety Council urging that the choice course of for the following secretary-general meets “at a minimal” the 2015 requirements of transparency and involvement of the 193 U.N. member nations.
Guterres’ election was a disappointment to girls, who had hoped to interrupt the all-male maintain on the submit, and to East Europeans who’ve by no means had a secretary-general from the area. It was imagined to be subsequent within the casual geographical rotation for U.N. chief when Guterres, a Portuguese, was elected.
The Basic Meeting elects the secretary-general on the advice of the 15-member Safety Council the place the 5 everlasting members — the U.S., Russia, China, Britain and France — have veto energy, so their assist is essential.
Within the 2016 race, there have been 13 candidates vying to be secretary-general, seven girls and 6 males, and the Basic Meeting held open interviews for every of them, the place ambassadors from all international locations might ask questions. Six straw polls have been held within the Safety Council between July and October, and Guterres led in all of them.
The present election is the primary underneath the 2015 decision the place an incumbent is in search of reelection. Whether or not any candidates are put ahead to problem him stays to be seen.
Of their joint letter, Woodward and Bozkir mentioned “the place of the secretary-general is one among nice significance that requires the very best requirements of effectivity, competence and integrity, and a agency dedication to the needs and ideas of the Constitution of the United Nations.” It pressured that candidates ought to have “confirmed management and managerial skills, in depth expertise in worldwide relations, and powerful diplomatic, communication and multilingual abilities.”
The letter states that Guterres “indicated his readiness to satisfy the expectations of the membership concerning transparency and inclusivity with the submission of a imaginative and prescient assertion and participation in a casual dialogue with member states.”
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has already endorsed Guterres for a second time period.
Woodward and Bozkir mentioned casual dialogues with candidates will happen earlier than the Safety Council begins the choice course of by Might or June.
Woodward tweeted that the Safety Council and Basic Meeting presidents have labored “kick-starting the method of choosing and appointing the U.N. secretary-general.”
“We stay up for contributing to an open course of over the approaching months,” Woodward mentioned.