Today, there was a meeting held by the General Assembly. It was divided into three parts: the election of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Appointment of the judges of the UN Dispute Tribunals, and the Appointment of the judges of the UN Appeals Tribunals.
Mr. Mogens Lykketoft led the meeting on the voting and announcements of various positions. Mr. Filippo Grandi of Italy was elected as the High Commissioner for Refugees. The distinguished representatives of the Pacific, European Union, and the Gulf spoke their congratulations and support for Mr. Grandi’s election. His term will begin on January 16th, 2015 and end on December 1st, 2020. His responsibilities are to lead and coordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve their problems internationally.
This is relevant to the current problem in Syria, which is the largest refugee crisis since World War II. The Office was created in 1950, and since then, it has helped nearly 55 million internally displaced and stateless refugees and returnees.
The Internal Justice Council recommended the judges of the Tribunals, who were appointed today by the Assembly. The statutes of the Tribunals were adopted and amended in resolution. There was a written ballot on the election for the Appeals and Dispute Tribunals, following the rules of procedure. Because the terms of the current judges are expiring, new judges who are eligible for election were voted for consideration. There are currently four vacancies on the Appeals Tribunal and three on the Dispute Tribunal from July 1st, 2016, to be voted for positions, which can be either full-time or half-time. This procedure for identifying suitable candidates enables the Council to place in an informal roster to possibly serve for the next scheduled term of judges.
Meeting: General Assembly 57th Plenary Meeting
Date/Location: Wednesday, November 18th, 2015; 11:00-11:30; General Assembly Hall
Speakers: Mogens Lykketoft, President of the United Nations General Assembly
Written By: WIT Representative Jin Yoo
Edited By: WIT Representative Alex Margolick