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The Next UN Secretary-General

Earlier this month, Antonio Guterres was elected as the next Secretary-General of the United Nations, beginning January 1st, 2017.

In a statement after it became clear that Guterres woudl be the Security Council’s choice, the 1 for 7 Billion campaign said that “the result is a triumph for the more open, inclusive and meritocratic process which 1 for 7 Billion has worked hard to achieve” and that “1 for 7 Billion is pleased that the Council has agreed on a well-qualified candidate who has engaged in dialogue with the General Assembly and civil society, and participated in a public debate organised by 1 for 7 Billion’s partners.”

Bill Pace later read a statement on behalf of the campaign at an informal meeting of the UN General Assembly and Secretary-General-designate Guterres stating, in part, that “through our global campaign, we know there is a widespread desire by global civil society for deeper engagement with the UN, and with implementing the Charter at every level. However, our engagement is being threatened in many places.”

There was disappointment, however, from those who believed that one of the seven female candidates for the position should have been chosen. Jean Krasno, chair of the campaign for a woman Secretary-General, said “We thought the U.N. could reform and move into the 21st century with gender equality. But they are still making backroom deals among the old boys club.”

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