HKS Alumnus Elected Next General Assembly President

June 12, 2012
By Jenny Li Fowler

Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) alumnus Vuk Jeremić MPA/ID 2003 has been elected president of the United Nation's General Assembly’s 67th session, which will start on Sept. 18.

Jeremić, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Serbia, defeated Dalius Čekuolis, Lithuanian Ambassador to the U.N., by a vote of 99 to 85, in the first secret ballot vote in more than 20 years.

In a press release, Jeremić stated that Serbia was a small, developing country that belonged to no military alliance or political union.

“It is therefore truly humbling to have received the confidence of so many nations from all over the world to preside over the main deliberative, policymaking and representative organ of the United Nations," he remarked.

“Let’s not forget that peace is not merely the absence of war,” said Jeremić, pledging to fulfill his duty as president by exercising his authority in a forthright and even-handed manner, with the utmost respect for the equal rights and dignity of each member state.

Jeremić is the first Serb to hold a top U.N. post.

Serb minister elected next General Assembly head, sign of country’s makeover on world stage
The Washington Post — The one-year presidency of the General Assembly rotates among regions, and this was the first contested election since 1991.

Usually, a region puts forward a single candidate, but this year Eastern Europe had two contenders.

It was not immediately clear whether Jeremic, 36, would be the youngest president of the General Assembly when he takes over from Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser of Qatar on Sept. 18 at the start of the 67th session.

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