|© UNICEF VIDEO|
|Permanent Representative of Finland to the United Nations H.E. Mr. Jarmo Viinanen discusses his new role as President of the UNICEF Executive Board.|
NEW YORK, United States of America, 23 January 2013 – The UNICEF Executive Board has elected its Bureau for the coming year. The Permanent Representative of Finland to the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Jarmo Viinanen, will head it as the new President of the Executive Board.
A career diplomat, Mr. Viinanen has acted as Chief of Cabinet and diplomatic advisor to the President of Finland. He will be representing the regional group of Western Europe and Other States.
The President and four Vice-Presidents of the Executive Board, who form the Bureau, each represent one of the five regional groups of the United Nations. The Executive Board elects a new Bureau each year, with the presidency rotating among the regional groups on an annual basis.
At the election ceremony, UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake presented the outgoing President, the Permanent Representative of Antigua and Barbuda, H.E. Mr. John W. Ashe, with a ceremonial gavel. He highlighted some of the achievements of the previous year, including progress on equity, transparency and gender balance.
|H.E. Mr. Jarmo Viinanen (right) speaks at the conclusion of the election of the 2013 UNICEF Executive Board Bureau at United Nations Headquarters in New York. Beside him is UNICEF Executive Director Anthony Lake.|
Joining Mr. Viinanen as a Vice-President in the new Bureau is the Permanent Representative of Albania to the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Ferit Hoxha, who has worked for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and served as ambassador to Belgium, France, Luxembourg and Portugal. He will be representing Eastern Europe.
H.E. Mr. George Wilfred Talbot, the Permanent Representative of Guyana to the United Nations, will represent Latin America and the Caribbean as Vice-President. He has held a number of diplomatic posts, working on economic, social and political issues. He has served on several intergovernmental bodies within the United Nations, including the Forum on Forests, the Commission on Sustainable Development and on the Executive Board of the Population Fund.
The Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Mohammad Khazaee, was also elected Vice-President, representing Asia. He has a background in international development financing.
The African States nominated the Permanent Representative of Kenya to the United Nations, H.E. Mr. Macharia Kamau, to return as Vice-President for a second year. Mr. Kamau has previously served in several United Nations postings.
In 2013, among the most important tasks of the Executive Board is the adoption of a new medium-term strategic plan for 2014–2017, which will guide UNICEF in its work over the next four years.
“This is an important year in the Executive Board,” Mr. Viinanen said. “We all fully support and value the crucial work of UNICEF, delivering results for children, even within a challenging global economic situation, and often in difficult contexts.” Mr. Lake agreed, saying, “This is going to be an extraordinary year. I’m looking forward to doing all the work that lies before us.”