Jordanian is new UNHCR chief


The UN General Assembly has approved the nomination of Jordan’s UN ambassador, Prince Zeid Ra’ad Zeid al-Hussein, as the new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, a media report said Tuesday.

UNHCR chief

Zeid al-Hussein was nominated by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon earlier this month to replace Navi Pillay, who took up the post Sept 1, 2008, Xinhua reported.

Pillay’s mandate was renewed for two years from Sept 1, 2012 and is due to step down Aug 31, 2014.

“I am going to be the first High Commissioner from the Asian continent and from the Muslim and Arab worlds,” Zeid al-Hussein said after the approval.

Zeid al-Hussein is currently Jordan’s Permanent Representative to the UN, a post he previously held from 2000 to 2007.

From 2007 to 2010, he served as Jordan’s Ambassador to the US and non-resident Ambassador to Mexico.

He also served as Jordan’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN from 1996 to 2000.

The post of the High Commissioner for Human Rights was established by the UNGA in 1993 to promote and protect the effective enjoyment by all people of all civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights, including the right to development.

The High Commissioner has a fixed term of four years, with the possibility of one renewal for another term of four years.