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China: Next UN Secretary General Should Be Asian

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi. Photo courtesy of AFP.
by Staff Writers
Havana, Cuba (XNA) Sep 18, 2006
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi reaffirmed in Havana on Saturday China's firm position that the next UN secretary-general should come from Asia. "Asia is fully capable of producing a competent and prestigious secretary-general committed to multilateralism and broadly accepted by the international community," said Yang in an address to the 14th summit of the Nonaligned Movement (NAM) in Havana.

Yang, who was leading a Chinese delegation for the meeting, expressed the hope that "Asian countries will maintain unity and strengthen consultation to attain our common goal."

Yang added that he was convinced the common position of Asian countries would continue to enjoy the full support of NAM.

Under the UN Charter, the secretary-general is appointed by the 192-member General Assembly on the recommendation from the Security Council. He needs to gain support of all the five veto-holding permanent members on the council -- the United States, China, France, Britain and Russia.

On the UN reform, Yang said the reform must be in line with the purposes and principles of the UN Charter so as to better respond to global threats and challenges.

"The reform should focus on strengthening the role of the United Nations in addressing development-related issues, increasing the voice of developing countries and accommodating their interests," said the vice foreign minister.

He also urged the developed countries to help with the development of developing countries by increasing assistance, relieving debts and opening markets.

Established in 1961, NAM groups 118 countries. China became an observer to NAM in 1992.

About 3,000 delegates from more than 100 countries, including 68 heads of state or government attended the Havana summit.

Source: Xinhua News Agency

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