UN Secretary-General Current Affairs

Antonio Guterres sworn in as UN Secretary General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Guterres (67) was sworn in as the 9th UN Secretary-General.

He was administered the Oath of Office by Peter Thomson, President of UN General Assembly at special plenary meeting. He succeeds Ban Ki-moon and shall have five-year term beginning January 1, 2017.

Antonio Guterres was unanimously appointed by the UN General Assembly after the 15-nation UN Security Council had approved him in October 2016.

About Antonio Guterres

  • Antonio Guterres is Portuguese politician and diplomat. He was Prime Minister of Portugal from 1995 to 2002.
  • He had entered politics in 1976 during Portugal’s first democratic election after the “Carnation Revolution” which had ended five decades of dictatorship.
  • He was the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) from June 2005 to December 2015.
  • He led the UNHCR through during one of the world’s worst present refugee crises, including those in Syria, Afghanistan, and Iraq.

About Secretary-General of United Nations

The UN Secretary-General is the head of the United Nations Secretariat. He is de facto spokesperson and leader of the UN. The role Secretary-General has been mentioned in Chapter XV (Articles 97 to 101) of UN Charter. The post lasts for five years and is limited to a maximum of two terms.

Summary

The post of Secretary-General of United Nations is not as powerful, but he serves as the UN’s top diplomat and chief administrative officer. He has to run an unwieldy bureaucracy and manage the competing demands of the world’s big powers. His role is to step in both publicly and privately to prevent escalation of international disputes.

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Former UN Secretary General Boutros Ghali passes away

Former United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali passed away in Cairo, Egypt. He was 93.

Mr. Boutros-Ghali was Egyptian politician and diplomat who had served as sixth UN Secretary-General from 1992 to 1996. He was United Nations’ first secretary-general from Africa.

About Boutros Boutros-Ghali

  • Boutros Boutros-Ghali was born in Cairo on 14 November 1922. His grandfather Boutros Ghali had served Prime Minister of Egypt from 1908 until his assassination in 1910.
  • During his term as UN Secretary-General, he had overseen several world crises including the break-up of Yugoslavia, genocide and famine in Africa.
  • He had associated himself with the famine in Somalia and had organised the first massive UN relief operation in the horn of African country.
  • During his tenure, he had earned a nickname Pharaoh for his reputation for being proud and prickly and reorganising the UN bureaucracy by slashing posts and demoting officials.
  • Prior to joining UN, he had worked in the administrations of Egyptian Presidents Anwar Sadat and Hosni Mubarak.
  • He had served as Egypt’s Minister of State (MoS) for Foreign Affairs from 1977 till 1991.
  • He also had served as first Secretary General of La Francophonie, an organisation of French-speaking nations from 1997 to 2002.

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