The UN gets a new security general: Antonio Guterres

Former United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, speaks with newly appointed Secretary General, Antonio Guterres (Picture courtesy of MSNBC)

By Matthew Mancini (’18)

On October 16, 2016, the United Nations appointed prime minister of Portugal Antonio Guterres as the next Secretary General of the United Nations. Guterres will replace the incumbent Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, who stepped down on December 31, 2016. Antonio Guterres took office on January 1, 2017 after being appointed by the General Assembly.

According to the UN website, the responsibility of the Secretary General is to be a “diplomat and advocate, civil servant, and CEO”. The Secretary General will also be the chief administrative officer “in all meetings of the General Assembly, of the Security Council, of the Economic and Social Council and the Trusteeship Council, and shall perform other functions as are entrusted to him by these organs”. Overall, Guterres will fulfill these tasks as Secretary General and serve as a mediator in foreign affairs within the United Nations.

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