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As UN Names Bulgarian to Replace Promoted Slokavia Jenca, Next SG to Another Group?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, March 17 -- A month after Inner City Press exclusively reported that Slovakia's Jan Kubis would replace Bulgaria's Nicholay Mladenov as UN envoy Iraq (and seven weeks after Inner City Press was first to report that Mladenov would replace Robert Serry as Middle East Coordinator), there are more UN posts going to Eastern Europeans.

 The question is, why?

  The vacant Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs post which Inner City Press reported Ban Ki-moon's senior adviser Kim Won-soo vied for before turning to Disarmament went to Miroslav Jenca of Slovakia (who, it's said, used to be Jan Kubis' chief of staff).

  Today, the UN announced "the appointment of Petko Draganov of Bulgaria as his Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA) in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan. Mr. Draganov succeeds Miroslav Jenca of Slovakia who was recently appointed Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs."

  Sources opine to Inner City Press that so many Eastern Europeans are being given UN posts to make it easier to deny that Eastern Europe regional group the right to the next Secretary General, and shift it to another group.

  And who, these sources ask, has a role in these appointments and an interest in the post of next Secretary General?

  Media in Slovakia credited Inner City Press for the Kubis scoop, here, with a separate box about Kubis' SG chances. Inner City Press has been reminded that candidates are to be nominated by their governments - a possible problem - and now, with more posts going to Eastern Europe, the dynamics may be changing.

At that time, Inner City Press said it would report on Mladenov's successor in Iraq.

  The move positions Kubis well, as well as possible given his gender, in the race to replace Ban Ki-moon as Secretary General. (Inner City Press story here.) The post is said slated for the Eastern European group. Kubis was previously foreign minister of his native Slovakia.

  Eighteen months in Baghdad, if successful, would be just the argument to win the secret ballot of the Permanent Five (P5) Security Council members that, for now, determines who the SG will be.

  When he was envoy to Afghanistan, Kubis deftly handled the P5. (Inner City Press questioned Kubis, for example here). He also served Ban on issues in Kyrgyzstan. What will other SG candidates be doing for the next eighteen months?

   That the UN's new Middle East coordinator will be Nickolay Mladenov, Inner City Press was able to report exclusively on January 30, with sourcing from Permanent Representatives that the letter, which Inner City Press saw, had gone to the Security Council.

  Of this exclusive report, at least 11 hours before any other mention, Inner City Press on February 2 directly asked UN Spokesman Stephane Dujarric, including though what process and timing Mladenov is to be replaced in Iraq.

    Dujarric declined to confirm, despite the Secretary General's letter. Video here.

Some neglected to credit the exclusive - policies unclear - while Inner City Press scoops have since been credited by UK Channel 4 (OCHA successor race) and The Independent (sale of post in Herve Ladsous' UN Peacekeeping, here).

    Earlier, Inner City Press reported that Mladenov was leaving his post as UN envoy to Iraq; before that, Inner City Press asked Robert Serry how he was remaining in the Middle East post past Ban Ki-moon's stated five year rule, and despite PNG (persona non grata) threats from Israel. Now, the switch is being made.

  The hint, as to Iraq, was as Inner City Press exclusively reported, the UK's attempt to pick Mladenov's successor. That was opposed, and rejected. Now, after a “rude” call from UK Prime Minister Cameron to Ban Ki-moon, sources say rather than Cameron's first pick Andrew Lansley, UK candidate Caroline Spelman is in the lead.

  Picking Mladenov's successor in Iraq is in its final stages, and we will have more on that soon. [See above.] Watch this site.


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