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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2706

South Korea leads in the UN race

New York, 17 September, ( South Korea's Foreign Minister Ban Ki Moon led the second straw poll in the UN Security Council to continue his lead for the upcoming election of the Secretary-General. In the closed door informal voting, he received 14 of the 15 votes, with only one negative vote. A second straw poll is scheduled to take place on September 28. The formal elections are scheduled for October.South Korea's Foreign Minister Ban Ki Moon led the second straw poll South Korea's Foreign Minister Ban Ki Moon led the second straw poll

India's Shashi Tharoor, Thailand's Surakiart, Jordan's Prince Zeid and Sri Lanka's Jayantha Dhanapala finished in the second, third, fourth and fifth places respectively.

The breakdown is as follows:

According to website monitoring the poll, Zeid’s fourth place showing was a surprise, considering the reception his nomination received from diplomats when announced last week.

Compared to the last straw poll, Tharoor picked up one more vote… in the discouragement column. He maintained his second-place finish with 10 encouraging votes.

In contrast, Surakiart’s picked up two more encouragements, giving him the "magic number" of 9 votes necessary to win (if he received no vetoes). Jayantha Dhanapala: Chances slippingJayantha Dhanapala: Chances slipping

"Given this, we can well expect to see Surakiart remain in the race. Could he be wooing the NAM summit in Havana? Even so, could this gain be a false impression, particularly after PM Thaksin’s remarks after speaking with UK and French diplomats at the ASEM summit?". the website said.

According to the website, Sri Lanka’s Dhanapala, on the other hand, had three votes - two formerly encouraging, one discouraging - shift over to the "no opinion" column. How to read this? Either he is no longer seen as a serious candidate either way or he’s the archetypical "compromise" candidate. Against the other candidates’ numbers, however, the former seems most likely. The fact that he is 67 - two years older than the official UN retirement age - has been cited as one reason for his poor showings.

Ban’s tally again places him in the unique position of being the one candidate who can claim with certainty permanent member support - 4 of the five in fact. Speculation again will arise as to whether that lone dissenter is Japan (without a veto) or China, whose veto could sink Ban’s candidacy despite his otherwise unanimous support. Or could it be another government entirely?, the website added.

- Asian Tribune-

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