Saturday, February 18, 2006

Malaysia supports Surakiart for UN Sec-Gen

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 (Bernama) -- Malaysia has given its commitment to support the candidature of Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister Dr Surakiart Sathirathai for the post of United Nations (UN) secretary general.

The Foreign Ministry said in a statement Friday night that the support was following the endorsement made by Asean at its summits in 2004 (in Laos) and last year (in Malaysia).

"Malaysia, as chairman of the Asean Standing Committee (ASC), would like to reiterate that support," the Wisma Putra statement said.

The term of current UN Secretary General Kofi Annan expires on Dec 31 this year. Kofi Annan, who is from Ghana, has held the post since Jan 1, 1997. He is serving his second term.

South Korea's Foreign Minister Ban Ki Moon and Sri Lankan diplomat Jayantha Dhanapala are among those from the Asian region said to be also eyeing the post.

Candidates from several European countries are also said to be interested in the post which is rotated by region and, by tradition, after Annan's term it is that of a candidate from Asia.


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