The United Nations Security Council on October 6 unanimously nominated former Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Guterres to be the next Secretary-General, recommending that the 193-member General Assembly appoint him for five years from Jan. 1, 2017.
The General Assembly is likely to meet next week to approve the appointment of Guterres, 67, who would replace Ban Ki-moon, 72, of the Republic of Korea. Ban will step down at the end of 2016 after serving two terms.
|António Guterres of Portugal. (UN Photo/Manuel Elias)
"Humility (is what I feel) about the huge challenges ahead of us, the terrible complexity of the modern world," Guterres said in a short statement in Lisbon, which he repeated in various languages.
"But it is also humility that is required to serve the most vulnerable, victims of conflicts, of terrorism, rights violations, poverty and injustices of this world," he said.
Ban, speaking during a visit to Rome, described Guterres as a "super choice" as his successor.
"I am sure he will carry the torch on the full range of key challenges, from strengthening peace operations to achieving sustainable development, upholding human rights and easing humanitarian suffering," Ban told reporters.
Guterres was prime minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002 and served as United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees from 2005 to 2015.Reuters