Russia says UN chief race to be impolite without Ukraine

Russia announces it does not want to hurt Ukraine and other lately elected UN Security Council members over new UN General Secretary election race without new members

Photo by: AFP (Archive)
Photo by: AFP (Archive)

Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin

Russia said it does not wish to offend Ukraine and other newly elected members of the United Nations Security Council over officially starting a new secretary-general election race before Jan. 1 opening of their council periods.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, a former South Korean foreign minister, will retire at the end of 2016 after working two five-year terms.

The 15 member security council, along with long-lasting veto powers the US, Russia, China, the UK and France acknowledges a confidential list behind closed doors and approves a candidate to be chosen by the General Assembly.

In September, the presidents of the General Assembly and the Security Council were asked to start looking for Ban's replacement by sending a joint letter to the 193 UN states summarizing the election process and requesting candidates. 

However, the Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin stated on Tuesday that the UN should not send the letter before January and added that the new secretary-general will be elected at the end of 2016 but, "we cannot do it without Ukraine and Uruguay and other new members.”

“Really it's impolite because the new members are going to be the ones ... doing the whole process, so how can we announce the process without them," Churkin told Reuters.

Ukraine, Japan, Uruguay, Egypt and Senegal are owing to participate the Security Council for a two-year term on Jan. 1.

"Why ... hurry and offend new non-permanent members of the Security Council," Churkin said, as showing its interest for Ukraine.

Mogens Lykketoft, president of the General Assembly, said on Tuesday he would like the letter sent "as quickly as possible." However, British UN Ambassador Matthew Rycroft underlined that "it's such an important issue that it would be unwise to try to push something like that through without broad agreement."

Although Russian authorities do not want to hurt Ukraine over the new secretary-general election the fact that the conflict between the pro-Russian rebels and the Ukrainian government, which started after Russia’s annexation of Crimea, has cost 8,000 lives since April 2014.

Kiev and the West accuse the Russian Federation of arming the separatists and sending troops into eastern Ukraine.

However, Russia denies the allegations, saying that only Russian "volunteers" fight alongside the rebels.

TRTWorld and agencies