In the News

Should a lawyer be running the IMF? - June 29

June 29, 2011
 
 The analyses of Christine Lagarde's selection as IMF chief have tended to focus on two principal attributes: nationality and gender. Both are important. But mostly left aside has been her educational and professional background. Unlike her recent predecessors, Lagarde is a lawyer rather than an economist. Dominique Strauss-Kahn had taught economics at the University of Paris. Rodrigo de Rato and Horst Kohler were also Ph.D. economists (though de Rato did also have a law degree). ...
 

U.S. Endorses France’s Lagarde as New I.M.F. Chief - June 28

June 28, 2011

PARIS — Christine Lagarde was expected to be named Tuesday as the new managing director of the International Monetary Fund, taking on one of the most powerful positions in global finance as a worsening debt crisis in Greece rattles financial markets worldwide.

Christine Lagarde spoke outside the I.M.F. in Washington last Thursday.Readers' CommentsShare your thoughts.Post a Comment »Read All Comments (5) »Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner announced Tuesday that the United States would back Ms. Lagarde, France’s influential finance minister, over the Mexican central bank governor, Agustín Carstens, her only competitor for the job, all but sealing her victory. ...

In show-vote, Qatar assumes GA presidency for 2011 - June 27

June 27, 2011
 
The Presidency of the UN General Assembly, to which Qatar’s permanent ambassador Nassir Abdulaziz al-Nasser was elected Wednesday, carries little formal power.
 
The term of office is only one year, and Mr. al-Nasser will not even vote on resolutions before the Assembly during his term. Nonetheless, it is a coveted role, as he will control the Assembly’s agenda, speak on behalf of all 192 member states, and can use the pulpit to express views on international events. ...
 

UN Food Agency Picks Brazil’s Graziano da Silva as Head to Replace Diouf - June 26

June 26, 2011
 
The United Nations’ food agency picked Brazil’s Jose Graziano da Silva as its director general, the first new leader in almost two decades as the world faces near-record food prices that are driving millions into poverty.
 
Graziano da Silva, 61, former Brazilian minister of food security, will take over at the Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organization from Jan. 1 to July 31, 2015, replacing Senegal- born Jacques Diouf after 18 years at the head of the biggest UN agency. Graziano got 92 votes against 88 for Spain’s Miguel Angel Moratinos Cuyaube, the FAO said in an e-mailed statement.

UN Chief: Voice for the Voiceless but Rhetorically Challenged [opinion] - June 22

June 22, 2011

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's re-election process is complete. No candidate emerged to challenge the 67-year old South Korean for another five-year term as the world's top diplomat. The question is whether he is good at his job and most agree he is, despite a low-profile that can work to his disadvantage.

After being approved by the 15-member U.N. Security Council last week, the 192-nation General Assembly on Tuesday, amid a slew of laudatory statements, voted by acclamation to appoint Ban for a second term, beginning in January and ending in December 2016. Members applauded loudly as Assembly President Joseph Deiss brought down his gavel. ...

Has Ban Ki-Moon Lived Up to His Goals? [opinion] - June 22

June 22, 2011
 
Ban Ki-Moon won a second term as United Nations Secretary General yesterday, affirmed by applause as he was the only candidate. Ban pitched himself as a mediator and bridge-builder, so it's not surprising that he has been a less visible, less controversial and, his critics would say, less charismatic Secretary General than his predecessor, Kofi Annan. But that's a question of style. It takes more than charm to make an organization like the UN effective. Has he succeeded? ...
 

Did Ban deserve re-election? [opinion] - June 22

June 22, 2011

 In a 2006 article for the International Journal of Peace Operations, I wrote that

During the campaign, Ban was viewed by many as the least visible [of candidates for Secretary General] and offering the least objectionable views in order to not offend any governments. With Ban at the helm, we may see the United Nations return to a more traditional “intergovernmental” role, working to consolidate the “supranational” gains achieved in the last decade.

Ban has lived up to this prediction in his self-described role as “harmonizer” and “bridge-builder” on the challenges that have faced the world community in the past 4½ years. ...

Ban Ki-moon gets second term as UN chief - June 21

June 21, 2011 
 
The U.N. General Assembly voted unanimously Tuesday to give Ban Ki-moon a second term as secretary-general, praising him for strengthening the role and visibility of the world body in difficult circumstances.
 
The 192-member assembly gave the 67-year-old South Korean diplomat another five years at the helm of the U.N. by voice vote. They applauded loudly as assembly president Joseph Deiss banged his gavel and proclaimed Ban's appointment to a new term starting Jan. 1.  ...
 

Ban Ki-moon and the indispensable UN [opinion] - June 18

June 18, 2011 

The United Nations, which seems to be emerging as the indispensable partner in global affairs even for the United States, will be led for a second five-year term by South Koreas’s Ban Ki-moon who took over as Secretary General in 2007.

The 15-nation UN Security Council decided unanimously today to recommend him to the 192-nation UN General Assembly for confirmation through to the end of 2016. The eighth person to serve since the UN’s creation, Ban has a mixed reputation in this very challenging and controversial job. ...

Click here to read the full article at The Moderate Voice.

Security Council Backs Ban for Second Term as UN Chief - June 17

June 17, 2011

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon received the unanimous support of the Security Council today for a second five-year term in office.

The U.S., Britain, China, France and Russia, the council’s permanent members, joined in the adoption by acclamation of a resolution recommending that the UN General Assembly re-appoint the former South Korean foreign minister. Council members Brazil, Germany, India and South Africa also supported the measure. ...

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