Clear favourite emerges in race for new UN chief, official vote expected Thursday
Posted by News Express | 5 October 2016 | 2,043 times
Antonio Guterres is set to become the next United Nations Secretary General after surviving a secret Security Council vote Wednesday, diplomats say.
Among the 10 candidates, the former UN refugee agency head from Portugal has been the front-runner to take the helm of the global body after Ban Ki-moon's tenure ends Dec. 31.
"Today, after our sixth straw poll we have a clear favorite and his name is Antonio Guterres," Russia's Ambassador to UN Vitaly Churkin told reporters after the vote.
“We have decided to go to a formal vote tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock, and we hope it can be done by acclamation,” he said.
Guterres lead in the last five polls which began in July.
As the Security Council prepares for the vote Thursday to recommend a candidate for endorsement by the 193-seat General Assembly, the votes of the permanent five – China, France, Russia, U.K., and the U.S. – will be decisive.
The votes are marked as encourage, discourage and no opinion, and color-coding will ensure ballots by permanent Security Council members have more bearing than non-permanent member votes.
•Credit (except headline): Anadolu Agency. Photo shows Antonio Guterres.