UN conducts secret vote for next Secretary-General

However, the UN Security Council has not made any announcement of the results

UN conducts secret vote for next Secretary-General

A secret ballot poll on candidates vying to select the ninth Secretary-General of the United Nations was reportedly held on Thursday.

The UN Security Council, however, has not made any announcement of the results yet.

Following the poll, Japan's Ambassador Koro Bessho, also the Security Council president for July, told media here on Thursday that "the candidates will be informed of the results through respective permanent representatives of nominating member states".

Under the UN Charter, the UN Secretary-General shall be appointed by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council. In practice, the Security Council, particularly its five permanent members, will make the final choice and send a single candidate to the General Assembly for approval.

Before the final decision comes out, several rounds of secret polls would be held among the 15 Security Council members.

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So far, 12 candidates have been competing for the post of the next UN chief: half of them are women; eight are from  eastern European nations. Among them are former UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres, former Slovenian President Danilo Turk, UN cultural agency UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark.

In Thursday's ballot, Security Council members have voted "encourage", "discourage" or "no opinion expressed" for each one of them.

The second round of secret poll has not yet been scheduled.

Incumbent UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is going to conclude his term at the end of 2016.