ISSN 2330-717X

Serbia’s Jeremic To Chair UN General Assembly

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By Bojana Barlovac

In a secret vote at a plenary session, representatives of the UN member states have elected Vuk Jeremic of the Democratic Party in Serbia as president of the UN General Assembly.

Hundred and ninety countries voted and he got 99 votes.

“We are a small developing country that does not belong to any military alliance and it is a great honour for us to get such a huge support,” Jeremic said.

Jeremic, who has been a frequent guest at the UN General Assembly opposing Kosovo’s independence in 2008, will be heading the Assembly for the next year.

It was a tight race between Jeremic and Lithuanian Ambassador to the UN, Dalius Cekuolis.

Jeremic said earlier that if elected, he would endeavor to enhance the role of the body that the Millennium Declaration defined as the “main policymaking and representative organ of the United Nations.”

The post of President of the General Assembly is mainly of a technical nature but it still carries a certain amount of prestige and responsibility.

Over the past few years a number of proposals appeared with a view to agreeing the criteria for electing a new President of the Assembly, the most recent appearing in 2007 from the Institute for Global Policy.

This says any potential candidate should meet four set criteria: (i) availability to devote full-time attention for many months, (ii) political independence, (iii) multilateral leadership experience and (iv) a thorough understanding of the UN Charter.

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The Balkan Insight (fornerkt the Balkin Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN) is a close group of editors and trainers that enables journalists in the region to produce in-depth analytical and investigative journalism on complex political, economic and social themes. BIRN emerged from the Balkan programme of the Institute for War & Peace Reporting, IWPR, in 2005. The original IWPR Balkans team was mandated to localise that programme and make it sustainable, in light of changing realities in the region and the maturity of the IWPR intervention. Since then, its work in publishing, media training and public debate activities has become synonymous with quality, reliability and impartiality. A fully-independent and local network, it is now developing as an efficient and self-sustainable regional institution to enhance the capacity for journalism that pushes for public debate on European-oriented political and economic reform.

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