Earlier this week, the security council officially nominated Ban Ki-Moon, South Korea’s foreign minister, to become the next secretary-general of the United Nations. Ban’s nomination will shortly be rubber-stamped by the general assembly, and his term will begin on 1st January 2007.
But the new secretary-general will inherit an organisation in deep trouble; and much of the blame for this can be laid at the door of the outgoing secretary-general, Kofi Annan. Six months ago, Annan’s waning credibility was dealt a death blow by the UN general assembly. By an overwhelming majority, including most developing countries, the member states rejected…
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