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U.N. assembly approves second term for U.N. chief Ban

Written by kumaran   // June 22, 2011   // Comments Off

Ban Ki-moon

The 192-nation U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday unanimously approved a second five-year term for U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon, who analysts and diplomats see as a solid ally of Washington.

The former South Korean foreign minister, who took over as U.N. secretary-general from his predecessor Kofi Annan in 2007, was re-elected to the world body’s top job by acclamation, effective next January 1.

Ban, 67, was unopposed, making his re-election a virtual certainty after the Security Council last week recommended he continue at the helm of the United Nations. He thanked the U.N. member states for the “great honor” they bestowed on him but later told reporters he had much unfinished business.

“Clearly we have far to go,” Ban said. “Too many people lack basic human rights. Too many people are hungry. Too many children die needlessly every day.”
“Seldom has the United Nations been more relevant and never has it been more necessary,” he added.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice welcomed Ban’s re-election and praised his performance in “one of the toughest jobs in the world. ”No one understands the burdens of this role better than he,” Rice said, adding that Washington was “grateful that he is willing to take them on.”

All the regional groups of U.N. member states backed Ban, including the Latin American and Caribbean group, the last to officially endorse his re-election.
U.N. officials and diplomats had said Cuba, Barbados and others held up the group’s endorsement amid complaints that Ban had neglected the region. Havana denied causing a delay. [Read More]

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