UN Elects New Secretary General with Thoughts from our Model UN Member

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UN Elects New Secretary General with Thoughts from our Model UN Member

Daniel Carvalheiro-Santos, Staff Writer

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On October 5th, 2016, the UN Security Council finally selected a new Secretary General following the ending of Ban Ki-moon’s ten-year term. After winning six Election rounds, Antonio Guterres, of Portugal, was elected as the first-ever Portuguese Secretary General. Many people are unaware of this ongoing election, one that has endured multiple ballots. This election, however, is extremely important to future of the world and the UN. With many international conflicts going on, Guterres has an overwhelming road of solutions to produce. Having been the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Guterres is well-equipped to resolve the current European refugee crisis. However, Guterres’s main platform highlight is to strive for unity, an eminent first step essential for peace.

To get a student insight on the news, I decided to interview Model UN member, Justin Oei. Justin was quite impressed with the election of Antonio Guterres, but expressed regret for the nomination, stating he was, “hoping they would elect a woman.” Noting the Secretary’s “wealth of experience”, Oei stated that Guterres was “very qualified”. He explained the fact that Guterres was High Commissioner of Refugees, would, “fix the current crisis [and] transform the way we look at refugees.” In addition, Justin Oei elaborated that we would start treating refugees differently because of the changes the new Secretary-General would make.

Guterres has devoted more than have his life to humanitarian projects and has now encountered his most difficult project yet: 2017. This year will bring much-needed work throughout war-torn countries, such as Syria and Palestine.  In  attempting to bring order to countries dealing with incoming refugees, as well as the eminent threat of terrorism, Guterres has a big job ahead of him, one which the world is watching to make sure he succeeds.

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