Appointment of António Guterres as United Nations Secretary-General

Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
October 13, 2016

I am delighted to congratulate Mr. António Guterres on his appointment today by the United Nations General Assembly to serve as the next United Nations Secretary-General.

The world faces an unprecedented number of challenges – from ending the conflict in Syria, to addressing the worst global displacement crisis since the Second World War, to implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals. As I witnessed firsthand during Mr. Guterres’ tenure as United Nations High Commission for Refugees, he possesses the experience, vision, and moral authority to tackle these challenges head on. The United Nations needs a steadfast leader at its helm, and Mr. Guterres has proven time and again that he can fill that role.

I also would like to applaud the other candidates who competed in the Secretary-General race, who spent many months presenting their ideas for improving the United Nations and making the world a better place. The United States is pleased that this Secretary-General selection process was more transparent and that it included a diverse pool of candidates, including an unprecedented number of women.

I offer my thanks to outgoing Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon who has provided tireless, thoughtful leadership during a period of proliferating global challenges. I salute his dedication to the United Nations and his many accomplishments as its Secretary-General.