The Swiss daily “Neue Zürcher Zeitung” (NZZ) found several reasons for Eastern Europe’s failure to plant the next UN Secretary-General. The publication points out that, just at the beginning of October, seven out of 10 remaining candidates were Eastern Europeans. But nobody made it.
According to NZZ, one of the reasons for the failure was the high number of candidates from the region. Instead of going into the race unified, a good chance was dissipated with countless Eastern European candidates. The daily diagnoses “diplomatic clumsiness” in Eastern Europe. Therefore it was “not a coincidence” that region had never gained the top UN position, and that it remained a lightweight at the United Nations.
But, NZZ mainly blames Bulgaria for the failure to place an Eastern European lady on the highest U.N. post. Prime Minister Boiko Borissov had demonstrated an “amateurish approach”, the newspaper writes.
According to the publication, Irina Bokova had good chances at first, until she was accused of corruption and close ties to Vladimir Putin, in an obscure media campaign. Because Bokova had not been convincing enough in the U.N. hearings, Borissov had abruptly replaced her with Kristalina Georgieva. But the latter had been connected too closely to western institutions to be acceptable to Russia.
The “affair”, says NZZ, also “undermined the credibility of the Bulgarian ladies” and demonstrated “how the male political leaders of Bulgaria treat their female colleagues”.
The Swiss daily goes even further. Borissov’s “dilettante proceeding” had triggered a domestic political crisis in Bulgaria. All in all, the lack of a will in the region, along with the “embarrassing political drollery” in Bulgaria, had now lead to the fact that Eastern Europe had to wait another 10 years, at least.
The NZZ article (in German)