Ex-Australia PM Rudd among those seeking top UN post

Kevin Rudd seeking for name to be added to list of candidates hoping to become United Nations secretary-general

Ex-Australia PM Rudd among those seeking top UN post

World Bulletin / News Desk

Ending months of speculation, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop confirmed Monday that former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has asked the government to back his bid for United Nations secretary-general candidacy. 

 Ban Ki-moon currently holds the UN's top position, and with his successor to take office Jan. 1, 2017, Rudd needs the backing of the Australian government for his name to be added to a present list of 12 candidates which includes former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark. 

 "Kevin Rudd has requested that the Australian government nominate him and, as the prime minister has indicated on a number of occasions, that'll be a matter for Cabinet," Bishop told Sky News on Monday.

"I'll certainly put the matter forward.”

It’s expected that Rudd’s request will be put to the Cabinet this week.

When asked if he supported Rudd's nomination, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull replied: "As the Foreign Minister has said, and I think I've said on many occasions, this is a matter that we will consider in the Cabinet.”

Rudd posted his response to Bishop and Turnbull on Facebook.

“I respect the internal processes of the Australian government. I respect the fact that the government has many other priorities at this time, having just been returned to office. This is a matter for the prime minister, the foreign minister and their colleagues at a time of their choosing."

Conservative government members, however, are known to hold reservations about supporting the former Labor Party leader’s bid.

In April 2015, Fairfax reported that friends, analysts and former colleagues of Rudd had disclosed that he had been campaigning for months for the post.

Rudd, who was elected prime minister in 2007, dumped in 2010 then re-elected in 2013 after deposing then Prime Minister Julia Gillard, did not deny his interest.

In April 2016 Immigration Minister Peter Dutton (from the ruling Liberal Party) scoffed at speculation about Rudd’s tilt at the position. Dutton advised him Rudd take up a more normal retirement hobby “and play golf or buy a caravan".

"Kevin was never happy just running Australia,” Dutton told a Sydney radio station. “He believed he was always destined to run the world. Kevin's ego makes Donald Trump's look like a rounding error.”

Rudd’s eleventh hour bid puts pressure on the government to address his request as a matter of urgency.

The first significant stage in selection process comes Thursday, when UN Security Council will take a straw poll to see which candidates have strong support.

In April, a poll revealed that twice as many Australians support New Zealand's Clark to lead the UN than Rudd.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 18 Temmuz 2016, 16:34
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