Our ambassador to the UN Prince Zeid Al-Hussein has entered the race for the UN Secretary General position as Kofi steps down this year. The prince, who is the King’s cousin, does stand out politically; he has the educational background in politics and the experience and respect as a diplomat. Call me cynical but the likelihood of an Arab Muslim getting the job is pretty slim in my opinion, especially with regards to regional turmoil. South Korea looks like the more likely candidate. I don’t know whether the Prince’s origin and religion will come into play but it will play a role and I think the mass media is bound to pick up on it.
Japan’s U.N. ambassador, Kenzo Oshima, said he had no problem with Zeid’s nationality, telling reporters, “Asia is diverse. There is nothing problematic about anyone coming from that part of the world as a candidate,” Oshima said. “He is as equally entitled to candidacy as any others.” [source]
There was talk much earlier in the year of him being a serious candidate so I don’t know why there was such a long wait for him to throw his hat in the ring. That being said, the prince being the next UNSG would elevate Jordan and put the moderate Arab Muslim in the spotlight on the international stage in a time when it is in demand. And for that very reason I’m inclined to believe that many nations might not want to see that happen and it might work to his disadvantage when voting time come around.
That being said, I hope he gets the job. It will age him 40 years but I hope he gets it.
(Petra)Ã¢??Jordan officially asked the Arab League Council’s 126th session, due to convene Wednesday, to support its nomination of His Royal Highness Prince Zeid Bin Raad for the UN General Secretary post to succeed Kofi Annan, and to consider His Royal Highness as a pan-Arab nomination.
Jordan’s permanent representative to the Arab League Omar Rifai handed tonight a memorandum in this regard to the Arab League Secretary General. [source]