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UNITED NATIONS, United States (AFP) — The UN Security Council and General Assembly on Thursday launched the recruitment process for the next secretary-general, a post currently held by Antonio Guterres who has announced he will seek a second term.
Aged 71, the former Portuguese prime minister enjoys broad support at the General Assembly and the Security Council, including crucially from its five permanent members — the US, Russia, China, France and Britain.
Guterres has faced criticism however from several non-governmental groups who claim he is not doing enough to defend human rights globally, a charge he disputes.
“Candidates should possess proven leadership and managerial abilities, extensive experience in international relations, and strong diplomatic, communication and multilingual skills,” said a letter adopted Thursday by the Security Council.
And at least one country wants to see the UN’s top spot filled by a woman for the term, which would run from 2022-2026.
In the letter — sent to the 193 member states of the United Nations and obtained by AFP — Honduras pleaded for female candidates.
“Look genuinely at your commitments to the United Nations and present women candidates… and commence a nomination process where equality and inclusivity are possible and the norm,” Honduras ambassador to the UN Mary Elizabeth Flores Flake wrote.