Vanuatu Elected One Of The Vice-Presidents Of The 72nd Session Of UN General Assembly

First time to be selected when country's Ambassador is ni-Vanuatu

Compiled By Fern Napwatt

PORT VILA, Vanuatu (Vanuatu Daily Post, June 23, 2017) – Vanuatu was elected as one of the Vice-Presidents of the Seventy-Second Session of the United Nations General Assembly at the end of last month.

According to a Press Statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Vice-Presidents of the biggest Multilateral body in the world are elected through a system that ensures equitable geographical representation.

“Vanuatu, along with Indonesia, Afghanistan, United Arab Emirates and Sri Lanka were endorsed by the Asia-Pacific Group before being elected as the Group’s representatives by the member states of the General Assembly,” it stated.

“The Vice-Presidents will serve alongside the President elect of the General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Miroslav Lajčák, Slovakia’s current Minister of Foreign and European Affairs.” The report stated that the Vice-Presidents will assist the President elect chair General Assembly meetings, setting General Assembly agendas and oversee rules, protocols and etiquettes during the 72nd session.

“This will be Vanuatu’s second time to ever serve as a Vice-President of the United Nations General Assembly but the first for the Vanuatu Mission to the United Nations headed by a Ni-Vanuatu.”

According to the statement, Vanuatu was first elected as a Vice-President in 1988 when the Vanuatu Mission was under the leadership of Ambassador Robert Van Lierop.

“It is a proud moment for me and certainly for Vanuatu to be elected to this leadership position especially at a time when a Ni-Vanuatu is serving at the helm of the Vanuatu Mission to the United Nations”, said a delighted Ambassador Odo Tevi, Vanuatu’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

The role of Vice-Presidency of the General Assembly will enable Vanuatu to be seated at the table with other major international players to shape global agendas and challenges such as international terrorism, international peace and security, preventative diplomacy, international migration, international Human Rights issues and to advance Sustainable Development Goals.

The report stated that Vanuatu was in the previous month elected for the very first time to membership of the United Nations Commission on Population and Development (CPD).

“Vanuatu was one of 11 UN member states elected to serve a term of office for 4 years beginning in April 2018. Vanuatu along with China and Bangladesh will represent the Asia-Pacific Group in the 47-member Commission.”

The CPD is one of several commissions of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSCOC) which plays a primary role in the follow-up to the implementation of the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development.

According to the press statement, through its roles as Vice-President of the General Assembly and membership to the CPD, Vanuatu, through its Permanent Mission to the United Nations will continue to play its part in advancing global affairs.

“The Vanuatu Mission’s next step is to secure a seat in the 36-member Executive Board of the United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Population Fund and United Nations Office of Project Services for the 2019 -2021 period. If successful, it will also be a first for Vanuatu,” the statement concluded.

Vanuatu Daily Post
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