Breaking: Portugal’s Guterres elected UN Secretary-General by a landslide

Congratulations are in order for Guterres. Russian Ambassador Churkin speaks, flanked by US Ambassador Powell. [Twitter]

The UN Security Council elected former Portuguese PM António Guterres as UN Secretary-General today (5 October). According to leaked information from the secret vote, he received 13 votes in favour from the 15 members of the Council, and two “without opinion”.

The decision came as a big surprise, because although Guterres ranked first in all five straw polls held so far, it was assumed that a woman from Eastern Europe would be elected. This is why Commission Vice-President Kristalina Georgieva joined the race, pushed forward by the EPP, and personally supported by Angela Merkel.

Georgieva’s results were appallingly disappointing. She ranked 7th, obtaining 5 votes in favour, eight votes against, including two from permanent members of the Security Council (P5), and two “without opinion”.

Undoubtedly, this will be a disappointment for Georgieva, and a humiliation for the Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, who withdrew the candidacy of Irina Bokova, the UNESCO Director General.

Bokova was the woman candidate with the best score, and 4th overall, with 7 votes in support, 6 against, including 2 from the P5, and 1 “without opinion”.

Slovakia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Miroslav Lajčák, came second, with 6 votes in favour, 6 against, of which 2 vetoes came from the P5, and two “without opinion”.

Coming in third was Serbia’s Vuk Jeremić, who obtained 7 votes against, of which 3 vetos came from the P5, and 2 “without opinion”.

New Zealand’s Helen Clarke ranked fifth, followed by Argentina’s Susana Malcorra, Georgieva, Slovenia’s Danilo Turk, Macedonia’s Srgjan Kerim, and Moldova’s Natalia Gherman.

According to Reuters, Bokova ranks second, while Georgieva is ninth.


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