General Assembly Elects Environmental Sustainability Director Csaba Kőrösi of Hungary President of Seventy-Seventh Session, Selects Main Committee Bureaus
Texts Endorsing Progress Declaration of International Migration Review Forum, Approving Civil Society Participation in Global Road Safety Meeting Also Adopted
The General Assembly elected Csaba Kőrösi (Hungary), Director of Environmental Sustainability at the Office of the President, by acclamation today to serve as President of its seventy-seventh session, while also electing the Bureaus of its six Main Committees.
Delivering his acceptance speech, he laid out his vision and priorities, noting that his office “will pursue an integrated agenda of peace, prosperity and sustainability, and will be an agent of multilateralism, multiculturalism and multilingualism.”
He said his presidency will carry out its work based on the motto, “Solutions through Solidarity, Sustainability and Science” and address complex challenges by focusing on five priorities: standing firm on the basic principles of the United Nations Charter; making significant and measurable progress in sustainability transformation; aiming at integrated, systemic solutions; enhancing the role of science in decision-making; and increasing solidarity to better endure new chapters of crises facing the world.
“The geopolitical risks and those stemming from the unsustainable way of our development have started to merge and reinforce each other,” he said, warning that together with the war in Ukraine and other armed conflicts elsewhere, they create a “perfect storm” and unprecedented instability for the years to come.
Therefore, Member States should seek integrated solutions to the systemic challenges. “There is no way back to the old normal,” he said. “The only way out of our current predicament is through continued reforms and transformation of this Organization and strengthening our cooperation.”
Urging Member States to do much better in delivering on their jointly agreed goals, commitments and pledges, he said that science must guide efforts regularly. Similarly, the General Assembly must work in an impact-oriented manner.
He pledged to coordinate action with the Secretary-General, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council and all other relevant organs of the United Nations and devote special attention to impact-oriented and regular consultations with civil society organizations, youth representations, scientific institutions, knowledge centres, faith-based organizations, representatives of the business communities and key institutions of finance.
“We live in times that rock the foundation this Organization was built upon,” he said, recalling that 77 years ago, Member States demonstrated that lasting peace can be built on the ashes of war. The same resolve must be shown today to stand up to the challenges that threaten international peace and security as well as a sustainable future.
Only by joining forces, the unprecedented global challenges of today and tomorrow can be addressed, he said. Quoting the words of industrialist Henry Ford, he concluded: “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.”
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, congratulating the President-elect, noted that Mr. Kőrösi brings a broad perspective to his new post — a familiarity with the United Nations from his time as Permanent Representative of Hungary, expertise in environmental sustainability, and steadfast commitment to multilateral action.
“We face a world in peril,” he said, citing the war in Ukraine in all its dimensions, the deepening impacts of the climate crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic and escalating humanitarian needs, hunger and poverty. “The months ahead will test the multilateral system,” he observed, emphasizing that the General Assembly is central to all actions and its seventy-seventh session can be a moment of transformation — a time to recalibrate multilateralism and strengthen the foundations of global cooperation.
Congratulating the President-elect on behalf of regional groups were representatives of Niger (African States), Pakistan (Asia-Pacific States), Panama (Latin American and Caribbean States), Spain (Western European and Other States) and the United States (Host Country).
Also in accordance with tradition, the Secretary-General drew lots to determine which delegation would occupy the first seat in the Assembly Hall during the seventy-seventh session. Belize was picked for the first seat, to be followed by all the other countries in English alphabetical order. The same order will be observed in the Main Committees.
The Assembly then elected the following Vice-Presidents of its plenary: Australia, Benin, Burundi, Chile, El Salvador, Israel, Jamaica, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Nepal, Niger, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Viet Nam and Zimbabwe. Those elected join the five permanent members of the Security Council — China, France, Russian Federation, United Kingdom and the United States — which serve annually as Assembly Vice-Presidents.
Iran’s representative said Israel, which continues to violate General Assembly resolutions, has no moral and legal merit to serve as Vice-President. His delegation therefore disassociates itself from the decision.
Syria’s representative expressed his reservation over the nomination of Israel, which continues its occupation of Arab territories, including the Syrian Golan. Israel also scorns the General Assembly and Security Council resolutions. His delegation therefore disassociates itself from the decision.
Members also held consecutive meetings of its six Main Committees to elect members of their respective bureau by acclamation.
The First Committee (Disarmament and International Security) elected Magzhan Ilyassov (Kazakhstan) as Chair; Szilvia Balázs (Hungary), Daniel Andreas Roethlin (Austria) and Juan Marcelo Zambrana Torrelio (Bolivia) as Vice-Chairs; and Nazim Khaldi (Algeria) as Rapporteur.
The Fourth Committee (Special Political and Decolonization) elected Mohamed Al Hassan (Oman) as Chair; Tiyani Raymond Sithole (South Africa), Klemen Ponikvar (Slovenia) and Iason Kasselakis (Greece) as Vice-Chairs; and María Noel Beretta Tassano (Uruguay) as Rapporteur.
The Second Committee (Economic and Financial) elected Lachezara Stoeva (Bulgaria) as Chair, and Francesca Cassar (Malta) as Rapporteur. The election of the Vice-Chairs from the African States, Asia-Pacific States and Latin American and Caribbean States will be held at a later date.
The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) elected José Alfonso Blanco Conde (Dominican Republic); Almaha Mubarak Al-thani (Qatar), Marta Paulina Kaczmarska (Poland) and Stefano Venancio Guerra (Portugal) as Vice-Chairs; and Salini Gungaram (Mauritius) as Rapporteur.
The Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) elected Philippe Kridelka (Belgium) as Chair, Carlos Manuel Videche Guevara (Costa Rica) as Vice-Chair and Marinko Avramović (Bosnia and Herzegovina) as Rapporteur. In the absence of nominations for the posts of Vice-Chair from each of the Group of African States and the Group of Asia-Pacific States, the postponement of elections for those posts to a later date.
The Sixth Committee (Legal) elected Pedro Comissário Afonso (Mozambique) as Chair; Tzvety Kirilova Romanska (Bulgaria), Anna Pála Sverrisdóttir (Iceland) and Edgar Daniel Leal Matta (Guatemala) as Vice-Chairs; and Sarah Zahirah Binti Ruhama (Malaysia) as Rapporteur.
In the afternoon, the Assembly, acting without a vote, adopted the draft decision titled “Participation of non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, academic institutions and the private sector in the high-level meeting on improving global road safety” (document A/76/L.61).
Through the text, the Assembly decided to approve the participation of the following non-governmental and civil-society organizations, academic institutions and the private sector in its high-level meeting on improving global road safety, including panel discussions: A Better Cameroon, AB InBev Foundation, Advanced Engineering Consultants Limited, Advocacy Unified Network, Amend, ANCAP Safety, Asociación Madres del Dolor, Association for Safe International Road Travel, Association for Solidarity through Humanitarian Imperative Action, Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medecine, Australasian College of Road Safety, Autoliv, Avoid Accident, Center of Consultancy for Road Victims Romania, Céntrico Rep. Safe Mobility Coalition, China Automotive Technology & Research Center, Christian Care Foundation Pakistan, Dr. Yusuf John Suberu Foundation, Driveschool Enterprises PTY Limited, Earth Regenerative Project Sierra Leone, Eastern Alliance for Safe & Sustainable Transport, Ethiopian Society of Emergency and Critical Care Professionals, Falconi, Foundation for Environmental Safety, Fundación Gonzalo Rodriguez, Gateway Associates (UK) Limited, Georgia Alliance for Safe Roads, Global New Car Assessment Programme, Global Road Safety Partnership, GreenLight Initiative, Humanity For The World, Improve Your Society Organization, Indian Alliance of NGOs for Road Safety, Institut de Diplomatie Publique/Instituto de Diplomacia Publica, Institut Safer Africa, International Road Victims Partnership, ISHAKA 2250, Jimma University, Johnson & Johnson, Keep Fighting Foundation, Kwapda’as Road Safety Demand Trust Fund, Les Amis de la Route Association de Prévention Routière, Liga Contra La Violencia Vial, Madan Bhandari Foundation, NASA Foundation Nepal, Needs for Orphans Foundation, Nepal Automobiles’ Association, Network of Employers for Traffic Safety, Odisha Calling Foundation, OHANA 503, Orienting ONGD, Prevención Accidentes Tráfico, Pirelli, Public Association “Road Safety”, Road Accident Prevention Network Center, Road Safety Alert Foundation, Road Safety Association, Road Safety Council of Pakistan, Road Safety Pioneers, Road Users Development Network of Nigeria, SAFE India (Social Association For Everyone), Safe Kids Malaysia Universiti Putra Malaysia, Safer Australian Roads and Highways, Safety Experts Technologies Morocco, Sankalp Jyoti, Securoute, Sizhe Global Nigeria Limited, SOS Road Crimes Panhellenic Road Victims Association, South Africans Against Drunk Driving, Sustainable Development Council, Swatantrata Abhiyan Nepal, Tariq Essalama Béjaïa, Trax Sports Society, União de Ciclistas do Brasil, World Organization for Peace and Hope for Man and Homelands, Youth Compassion for Humanity Uganda, Youth of India Foundation, Zambia Road Safety Trust and INKAD Association for Development and Social Welfare.
The Assembly then adopted the draft decision titled “Progress Declaration of the International Migration Review Forum” (document A/76/L.58).
Through the text, the Assembly endorsed the Progress Declaration adopted by the Forum, as contained in the annex to the resolution.
Austria’s representative, speaking in explanation of vote after the vote, said his country had abstained from voting on the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. Recalling his country’s statement on 20 May, he said that by not objecting to the adoption of the Progress Declaration, its general position on the Global Compact had not changed.
Hungary’s representative, also recalling its statement on 20 May, said that his country disassociates itself from the full text of the Progress Declaration and does not take part in the implementation of the Global Compact.
Singapore’s representative stressed that every country has the sovereign right to determine the conditions under which migrants will enter, reside and take up employment in its territories in accordance with national laws and international obligations. While the Progress Declaration is a commendable effort, it does not achieve the balance necessary to satisfy his country's concerns, he said. Therefore, Singapore is not in a position to reaffirm the Global Compact in its entirety and reserves its position on paragraphs 2 and 59 of the Progress Declaration. However, it has joined consensus on the resolution in the spirit of international cooperation, he said, referring to its explanation of position delivered at the adoption of the Progress Declaration by the Review Forum for full details on its position on the matter.
Bulgaria’s representative, referring to his country’s statement after adoption of the Progress Declaration during the Review Forum, reaffirmed his country’s position on the Global Compact, recalling that his country does not consider them nor their review outcomes binding.
Ethiopia’s representative said her country rejects paragraph 12 of the Progress Declaration, which attempts to establish an unfounded link between migration and water scarcity. Underscoring that the Progress Declaration is not a consensus document, she said her country’s intention is to keep intact the carefully negotiated document of the Global Compact. As paragraph 12 of the Progress Declaration amounts to amending the language of the Global Compact, her country disassociates from the current paragraph 12 of the Progress Declaration, she said, adding that it will not accept, in any future deliberations, paragraph 12 as a basis for discussion or negotiation.
Poland’s representative said her country did not support the Global Compact and disengaged in the Review Forum, disassociating from the Declaration.
Latvia’s representative said her country did not join the Global Compact and therefore is not bound by the Progress Declaration.
The Czech Republic’s representative said her delegation wishes to refer to its explanation of position delivered at the adoption of the Progress Declaration on 20 May.
Libya’s representative said his country did not support the Global Compact and disassociates it from the Progress Declaration.
Iran’s representative referred to its statement made during the meeting on 20 May.
The General Assembly will meet again at 10 a.m., on Wednesday, 8 June, to consider the special report of the Security Council on the use of the veto at the Council’s 26 May meeting in connection with the item entitled “Non-proliferation/Democratic People’s Republic of Korea”.