• Secretary-General

    UN Puts on Big To-Do, Amid Tight Security, for Signing of New Climate Agreement

    by  • April 22, 2016 • Climate and Environment, Secretary-General • 
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    On Earth Day, about 170 countries signed the new international climate agreement, including Dilma Rousseff, president of Brazil, here with Ban Ki-moon, UN secretary-general. MARK GARTEN/UN PHOTO

    The United Nations threw a large and lavish party at its headquarters in New York on Earth Day, the opening day of the signing ceremony for the world’s new climate agreement. About 170 heads of state and government representatives came to inscribe their names, in alphabetical order by country, in the General Assembly Hall,...

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    Another First for Candidates for UN Secretary-General? Tweeting

    by  • April 19, 2016 • Secretary-General • 
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    Helen Clark Twitter page

    This is not your grandfather’s election cycle. Will this be the year a woman is elected to one of the highest political positions in the world? What’s up with the surprise candidate gaining unexpected momentum? Can any candidate truly blend the need for the best-qualified administration with gender parity? It is unequivocal that this...

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    The Next UN Secretary-General: Views From UN Watchers

    by  • April 3, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, Security Council • 1 Comment
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    Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary-general, and Angela Merkel, Germany's chancellor, at a press conference in Berlin on March 8, 2016. EVAN SCHNEIDER/UN PHOTO

    The results of the latest FUNDS survey of global experts, conducted during the winter of 2015-16, contains clear messages about the next United Nations secretary-general: s/he should be a world leader with integrity and political courage who will prioritize UN reform; and the election process should be open and transparent. There is more room...

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    A New Plan to Recruit Candidates for UN Secretary-General Emerges

    by  • March 3, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General, Security Council, Women's Issues • 2 Comments
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    António Guterres, ex-head of the UN refugee agency and Portuguese, has opened the way for candidates outside Eastern Europe to run for secretary-general. UNHCR

    For the first time in United Nations history, officially announced candidates for the secretary-general race, underway this year, will be interviewed publicly in the General Assembly along the lines of a standard democratic election. Mogens Lykketoft, the Assembly president and a Dane, is pushing the “unprecedented transparent process,” as he put it, in selecting...

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    A Task for the Next UN Secretary-General: Review the Special Envoy System

    by  • February 23, 2016 • Secretary-General, UN Diplomats, UN Special Envoys • 
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    Leila Zerrougui, an Algerian lawyer

    When a tough independent report sharply criticized the United Nations in December for its bungled attempts to cover up, or at least ignore, the sexual abuse of children by peacekeeping troops in the Central African Republic in recent years, it named among the people responsible for letting the children down Leila Zerrougui, Secretary-General Ban...

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    The UN General Assembly Grows More Assertive Under a Dane

    by  • February 18, 2016 • General Assembly, Secretary-General • 
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    Mogens Lykketoft, a Dane and the president of the UN General Assembly, attending a humanitarian conference in Dubai, January 2016. MARK GARTEN

    Corridor diplomacy — private nonmeetings, informal discussions — has been the norm at the United Nations since its founding 70 years ago. It is the preferred method of its most powerful organ, the Security Council, particularly now, as the election of the UN’s next secretary-general for the 2017-2022 term is underway. In this election...

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    The UN’s Demands to Stop the Violence in Yemen Fall on Deaf Ears

    by  • October 26, 2015 • Human Rights, Humanitarian Aid, Middle East, Secretary-General, Security Council • 
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    Saudi led airstrike in Sana

    While the regional coalition led by Saudi Arabia continues its aerial bombardment against the Houthi rebels in Yemen, and as ground troops — from Bahrain, Sudan and United Arab Emirates — join the Saudis in the fray, the pain dealt to civilians, especially children, has been rising ever since the war began in March....

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    The Heart of Pope Francis’s Speech at the UN: Don’t Look Past the Poor

    by  • September 25, 2015 • Development, General Assembly, Poverty, Secretary-General, Women's Issues • 2 Comments
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    Pope Francis

    Pope Francis spread his gospel of not forgetting the poor at the United Nations on Friday morning, where he spoke in his native Spanish to the 193 member delegations and heads of state gathered before him at the General Assembly Hall. It was his first appearance at the UN during his first trip to...

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