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UN Now Has 193 Interviewers to Grill Candidates Seeking Top Job

  • For first time, more open process for new secretary-general
  • Eastern Europeans, women, favored to lead 70-year-old body
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The U.K. ambassador threw out an early grenade. He asked the candidate from Bulgaria, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, which parts of the United Nations “should be closed down to make it more effective.” She declined to respond.

Later, Antonio Guterres, a former prime minister of Portugal, faced queries by video-conference. Someone in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, wanted to know what he proposed to do as head of the UN to ensure that youth are made part of the fight against hate speech. Guterres agreed it was a "vital concern."