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UN General Assembly elects Antigua envoy president


09:37, June 15, 2013

UNITED NATIONS, June 14 (Xinhua) -- John William Ashe, ambassador to the United Nations for Antigua and Barbuda, was elected president of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) here on Friday.

The one-year presidency of UNGA rotates among regions, with the 68th session being the turn of the Latin American and Caribbean regional group and Ashe the unanimous choice.

The president-elect will assume office at the start of the 68th Session in September.

"My team and I pledge to be open and fully transparent. And we welcome your inputs on the work of the 68th Session," said Ashe after his election.

Ashe, leading the permanent mission of Antigua and Barbuda to the United Nations since 2004, will replace former Serbian foreign minister Vuk Jeremic, who now leads the current plenary session of the 193 UN member states.

Born on August 20, 1954, Ashe is also ambassador of his country to the World Trade Organization and the government's chief negotiator for sustainable development issues, among many other international responsibilities.

In his election speech, Ashe underlined that the United Nations must reflect on the new and emerging development challenges with attention to two main goals, which he identified as overcoming poverty and insecurity and ensuring sustainable development.

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