Russia weighs in

Just days before Ban Ki-moon visits Russia, it appears that Russia is making its ideas known. There are two important parts of this. First, this article reports that Russia is actively attacking the Eastern European candidates for Secretary General. Second, this article reaffirms that they are backing an Asian.

First, the attacks:

Russian diplomats and secret servicemen started actively diffusing information that tars Latvian President's reputation, in order not to allow her appointment as the UN Secretary General. Another target of the Russian discrediting campaign in the former President of Poland

Moscow elaborated and started realizing a secret plan of discrediting the Latvian President Vaira Vike-Freiberga, reliable sources told AIA. The Kremlin shows a growing discontent with regard of Washington's alleged intention to suggest Vike-Freiberga for the UN Secretary General at the end of this year. As a permanent member of the UN Security Council, Russia has a right to veto any inconvenient candidature for that position. The Russian administration, however, decided not to bring the case up to the necessity of using this right, caring of its image in the eyes of the other members of the UN General Assembly (it is enough to recall the negative attitude of the UN members to the regular usage of veto by the USA in what concerns the resolutions condemning Israel). The Kremlin has elaborated another scenario. According to a special plan which was approved at the highest level, the Russian official institutions having contact with foreigners, and first of all the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Intelligence Service, are now deploying a propaganda campaign aimed at slandering the Latvian President.

In addition, the article says that the Russians are leaning towards Sathirathi:

Russia has already announced, through its representative in the UN Andrey Denisov, that it will support the candidate from the Asian continent. Most probably it will be the abovementioned Thai politician, whom Beijing openly favors. As for Vike-Freiberga's candidature, it is unacceptable for Moscow not just because of highly strained relations with Riga in such issues as the state border and the Russian minority in Latvia. The Kremlin was extremely negative concerning Vike-Freiberga's recent speech during the Davos World Economic Forum, when she announced the necessity to reduce the authorities of the five UN Security Council permanent members, and called to view a possibility of changing the composition of this body.

It strikes me that a position of weaking the P5 would be a difficult campaign strategy. And unlikely that that position would make her a viable American candidate.


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