Bulgarian Intellectuals Urge Support for Irina Bokova’s Nomination for Top UN Job

Diplomacy | August 25, 2016, Thursday // 19:57|  views

Irina Bokova. File photo by BGNES

A group of prominent Bulgarian intellectuals has sent an open letter to the 15 members of the United Nations Security Council in support of the country’s nomination of Irina Bokova for the position of Secretary-General of the world organisation.

“The time has come for a woman from Eastern Europe to head the United Nations and this is Mrs. Irina Bokova, who is able to combine the grace of silk with the hardness of steel through her diplomatic governance, consensual decisions and touch,” says the letter signed by about five dozen representatives of Bulgarian diplomatic service, art, science, culture, media and businesses.

On August 29, the Security Council will hold a third straw poll in the selection of a successor to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who will step down at the end of 2016. The Security Council will choose from 10 candidates who have remained in the race after  Montenegro's Foreign Minister Igor Luksic and Croatia's former Foreign Minister Vesna Pusic withdrew from the competition.

Irina Bokova ranked third in the first informal vote in the Security Council held in July. She came in fifth in the second straw poll vote held earlier this month.

The Bulgarian candidate has proved to be in possession of the high qualifications necessary for the position of the UN Secretary-General; the nomination of Irina Bokova has been officially backed by representatives of the legislative and executive power in Bulgaria, as well as incumbent President Rosen Plevneliev and his predecessor Georgi Parvanov, the letter says.

In addition, “the Bulgarian Diplomatic Society, the National Association for International Relations, all art unions in Bulgaria, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, the Association of Industrial Capital in Bulgaria, the Bulgarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Bulgarian Association of Women Entrepreneurs” have all expressed their support for Irina Bokova through the media.

The intellectuals backing the nomination state they are convinced that Irina Bokova is “the personality who knows the complex diplomatic international and religious conflicts in the world, as well as the complicated interrelations and situations in the Balkans”.

In this environment Irina Bokova has mastered the abilities “to respect the cultural and religious diversity, to find the right approach in the search of solutions to  complex conflicts, often intertwined with historical burdening, ideological confrontation and religious intolerance,” the letter reads.

The supporters of the candidacy of Irina Bokova say that with her candidacy among the leading ones for deliberation in the Security Council, they put their trust  into the objectivity of the next straw poll vote, “also considering the particular responsibility you bear for the peace and security on the planet”.

Among the intellectuals who have signed the letter one can see the names of career diplomat and law professor Prof. Alexander Yankov, former Bulgarian representative to the UN; Stefan Vodenicharov, President of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences; film directors Angel Wagenstein and Ljudmil Staykov; writers Anton Donchev and Dragomir Shopov; poets Luchezar Elenkov, Lyubomir Levchev and Yordan Milev, as well as mezzo soprano Hristina Angelakova, to name just a few.




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Tags: Irina Bokova, Bulgaria, United Nations, Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, intelelctuals


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