Sunday, September 21, 2014

UN General Assembly Elects New President and Vice-Presidents

 

The General Assembly on Friday morning (8 June) elected Vuk Jeremić, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Serbia, as President of its sixty-seventh session, voting by secret ballot for the first time in more than 20 years.

 

Mr. Jeremić defeated Dalius Čekuolis, Lithuanian Ambassador to the United Nations, by a vote of 99 to 85.  The selection of the Assembly President traditionally follows the system of geographical rotation, with respective regional groups, in this case Eastern European States, putting forward a consensus candidate each year.  If a group cannot reach consensus on a single nominee, the door is open for a rare secret-ballot vote.  The last time it occurred was in 1991, when the Group of Asian States nominated three candidates.   

 

The meeting also marked the election of Vice-Presidents from the different regions of the world for the 67th session of the General Assembly. Afghanistan was elected as one of the five Vice- presidents from Asia Group. H. E. Zahir Tanin will represent the country in this position.  Previously, Ambassador Tanin served as a Vice-President of the 63rd and 65th Sessions of the General Assembly.

 

The Vice-Presidents for the sixty-seventh session are: Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Bangladesh, China, Congo, France, Ghana, Honduras, Israel, Lebanon, Nepal, Netherlands, Palau, Peru, Russian Federation, Sierra Leone, Trinidad & Tobago, United Kingdom, the United States.

 

The President informed delegates that the election of an additional vice president from among the African States would take place at a later date.

 

For Afghanistan, this is a significant achievement to serve as Vice-President of the United Nations General Assembly for the 3rd time in the last five years.  The Permanent Representative of Afghanistan is also currently serving as Chair of the Inter-Governmental Negotiations on Security Council Reform in his fourth consecutive General Assembly session in this role.

 

Afghanistan has already presented its candidature to the main body of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations for the terms 2016-2018 and is also a candidate for the President of the 75th session of the General Assembly and a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the terms of 2021-2022.