UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was unanimously elected to a second term by the UN General Assembly on June 18,.
The reelection now gives him another five years at the helm of the 193-member organization. However, it comes at a time when a deeply-divided world is facing numerous conflicts, growing impact of climate change, and a pandemic affecting the world.
Meanwhile, Ambassadors of different countries present in the assembly chamber applauded Guterres, as the Assembly President Volkan Bozkir announced his re-election by “acclamation,” (without a vote.)
Earlier, before the announcement, Estonia’s UN Ambassador Sven Jurgenson — the current Security Council president — read out a resolution adopted by the 15-member council recommending Guterres for a second term. Under the UN Charter, the General Assembly appoints the secretary-general on the recommendation of the Security Council.
While Guterres was the only candidate nominated by a UN member state — his home country Portugal –where he had previously served as prime minister, current Portuguese president Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa was present in the UN assembly chamber watching the event.
Seven individuals submitted applications this year for the secretary-general’s post — including former Ecuadorian President Rosalia Arteaga – and the others not having any backing from any government,.
Guterres — a former UN refugee chief – had been earlier taken office on Jan 1, 2017 after being elected by the assembly to succeed Ban Ki-moon following a hotly-contested and transparent race in October 2016 that initially included 13 candidates – seven women and six men.