11 June 2010
Deputy Secretary-General

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

‘Skill and Wisdom’ of New General Assembly President - Gained as Scholar, Minister


Parliamentarian – Needed Across Broad UN Agenda, Says Deputy Secretary-General


Following are UN Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro’s remarks following the election of the President of the sixty-fifth session of the General Assembly, in New York, 11 June:

I congratulate His Excellency Mr. Joseph Deiss on his election as President of the sixty-fifth session of the General Assembly.

I bring with me warm greetings from Secretary-General Ban, who as you may know is currently in South Africa attending the Opening of the World Cup — a truly special day for Africa and the world.

It is a pleasure to add my voice to all those paying tribute to the leadership of the President-elect.  I, too, look forward to his stewardship of this forum.

I also take this opportunity to pay tribute to the ongoing leadership of the current President of the General Assembly, and to thank him for all his continuing hard work during this sixty-fourth session.

The President-elect will take up his responsibilities at a crucial time for the international community — a time of continued economic turmoil and uncertainty; a period in which we continue to try to mount an adequate response to climate change; an era of new and dangerous threats to international peace and security — but also a time of tremendous opportunity for common progress.

The President-elect brings great experience to the job — as a scholar, as a parliamentarian, and as a government minister.  And he knows the immense value of the United Nations, having led Switzerland’s accession campaign to the Organization.

His skill and wisdom will be needed across our agenda, throughout the sixty-fifth session.  But as you know, we all face an early test:  the Millennium Development Goals Summit in September.  This meeting is a real opportunity to galvanize our work.  We must do our utmost to uphold the commitments we have made to the world’s people.

Mr. President-elect, the Secretary-General and I wish you every success, and we stand ready to support your work in any way possible.

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For information media • not an official record