“Abdulla Shahid’s long diplomatic experience, even in his current role as Minister of Foreign Affairs, has given him a profound understanding of the importance of multilateralism in addressing today’s global challenges”, She said General Secretary António Guterres.
He praised the president-elect for his “choice of hope as a central theme in his vision statement“And he noted that, coming from a small developing island state, Mr. Shahid” will bring unique insights “to the Assembly as the world prepares for the UN climate conference. COP26, in Glasgow in November.
In what was a contested election, with the former Afghan foreign minister Zalmai Rassoul, Mr. Shahid got 143 votes, against 48 for Mr. Rassoul.
“I also want to express my deep appreciation to His Excellency Dr. Zalmai Rassoul and thank him for contributing to this dynamic process,” added the head of the United Nations.
During the meeting, the Secretary General also randomly selected the member state that will occupy the first seat in the Assembly Hall in September, which went to Suriname.
Greeting and selection
The senior UN official also expressed his “deep appreciation” for Volkan Bozkir for his “outstanding leadership” as Assembly President during the 75th anniversary session.
“As our most representative body, the General Assembly is the foundation of all our work at the United Nations and is essential to our effectiveness as an organization,” he said. “In 2021, the world needs this effectiveness more than ever”.
On May 6, Mr. Bozkir met informally interactive dialogues in the General Assembly Hall – as ordered in mandates resolution 71/323 – in which candidates answered questions previously submitted by civil society and other representatives.
“I wholeheartedly congratulate the Honorable Abdulla Shahid on his election as the next president of the United Nations General Assembly”, said the president-in-office, recalling that the president-elect was “a strong voice” for the little ones. Island developing states.
The outgoing president also acknowledged Zalmai Rassoul’s “strong candidacy”, stating that his “vast experience in multilateral diplomacy” and “global vision” have “earned the respect of member states”.
“At this important moment in your country’s history, the international community’s support for Afghanistan’s long journey to democracy is more essential than ever,” said Bozkir, extending his best wishes to Mr. Rassoul as ambassador of Afghanistan in UK.
A photo / Loey Felipe
A world in mourning
The UN chief said millions of people mourn the loss of loved ones due to the COVID-19 pandemic in a crisis that has “dealt a severe blow to communities, society and economies”.
“Until everyone, everywhere has access to vaccines, it continues to pose a huge threat,” he stressed.
The 76th Assembly “will be grappling with the impact of the pandemic on the three pillars of our work: peace, sustainable development and human rights”, said Guterres, wishing Shahid “every success in his task”.
The head of the United Nations closed by offering the president-elect his “full support” and that of “the entire Secretariat” in achieving shared goals and defending universal values.
Meanwhile, messages of support and congratulations are echoed on social media, including from the World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who said he can’t wait to work with Shahid “to end the COVID19 pandemic and to health for all”.
Other elected officials
The presidents of the six main committees of the United Nations were also elected.
Omar Hilale of Morocco will chair the First Committee, which deals with disarmament; Vanessa Frazier of Malta will chair the second commission on economic and financial matters; and Mohamed Siad Doualeh from Djibouti will lead the Third Committee, which deals with human rights, humanitarian affairs and social issues.
The fourth commission for special policies and decolonization will be chaired by Egriselda Aracely González López of El Salvador; Mher Margaryan of Armenia will chair the Fifth Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Matters; and Alya Ahmed Saif Al-Thani from Qatar will lead the Sixth Committee, charged with international law and other legal matters.