A September Surprise?

Two sources suggest a speedy selection of the next SG, perhaps well before the end of the year. I’m skeptical of these reports and believe they are speculating prematurely, but they are posted here for your reference:

Last week, The Times (UK) reported that U.S. ambassador John Bolton wants Annan’s successor identified by July, but further noted the …

…speculation among insiders that Mr Annan, whose second five-year term expires on December 31, may step down several months early so that he can leave before the next General Assembly session in September.

This week, an article in India’s Daily Times that described the government’s negotiations on whether to put forward a candidate for the Deputy SG position also suggested an early selection date:

“…the successor to Annan is to be elected on September 24 when the UN Assembly meets.”

Update: In speaking with a trusted colleague later today, I was surprised to hear that he had been told that it was not an impossibility that SG Annan might step aside two or three months early. He was cautious however in suggesting that, in his opinion, Annan would only do this if he felt bringing on his successor early would speed the reform efforts Annan supports.

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