UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has chosen former Chilean President Michelle Bachelet to be the world body’s new human rights chief, diplomats said on Wednesday.
Bachelet’s appointment now needs to be approved by the 193–member U.N. General Assembly. She would replace Jordan’s outspoken Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, who is stepping down at the end of the month after one four-year term in the job, which is based in Geneva.
U.N. Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed told a group of ambassadors of the decision on Tuesday, said diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Bachelet, a victim of torture under the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, was one of conservative Chile’s most unusual presidents since the return to democracy in 1990.
The pediatrician-turned-politician was first served as president of Chile from 2006 to 2010. Her amiable style, welfare policies and steady economic growth in one of the region’s most developed countries made her a popular leader.
She then led U.N. Women, a body for gender equality and the empowerment of women, between 2010 and 2013, before returning to Chile where she was again served as president from 2014 to 2018.
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