Sat, 27 Feb 2021

UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres looks forward to working with U.S. President Joe Biden and his team as the United States "has a key leadership role to play," Guterres' spokesman said on Wednesday.

That includes peace and security matters in the UN Security Council, said Stephane Dujarric, the spokesman. "We also look forward to working with the administration to advance sustainable development, human rights for all the world's people."

In a regular press briefing, the spokesman said he expects the Guterres-Biden engagement will be very active and positive.

"I know he looks forward to working with President Biden and, obviously, with the secretary of state-designate (Antony Blinken) and, of course, with the permanent representative-designate (to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield), once she is confirmed and arrives here on site," Dujarric said.

"We have also seen the press reports of expected executive orders to be signed later this afternoon, notably on issues of climate, on global health, WHO (World Health Organization), pandemic," he said. "We welcome these reports. We welcome these developments."

"As soon as these executive orders are officially signed and become policy, we will, obviously, welcome them more formally," the spokesman said.

If the U.S. re-engagement with the WHO happens, it will send a clear and strong signal, he said. "And American leadership within many realms, including public health, is critical."

Biden was sworn in on Wednesday. His predecessor, Donald Trump, at almost the beginning of his four-year term, demonstrated his dislike for the United Nations by withdrawing from the Paris Agreement on climate change, the WHO, as well as the Iran nuclear deal.

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