2 RP diplomats elected to UN posts

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — Two Filipino diplomats have been elected to important positions in the 63rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly, the Philippine Mission to the United Nations said yesterday.

In his report to Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto G. Romulo, Ambassador Hilario G. Davide, Jr., Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations, said Second Secretary Elmer G. Cato was elected Vice Chairman of the Fourth Committee (Special Political and Decolonization) while Second Secretary Patrick Chuasoto was elected Rapporteur of the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary).

The General Assembly also elected former Minister Miguel d’ Escoto Brockmann of Nicaragua as President of the 63rd Session as well as the Vice Presidents of the General Assembly as well as the Chairmen, Vice Chairmen, and Rapporteurs of the six main committees.

The Fourth Committee is in charge of issues related to decolonization, peacekeeping, information, outer space and Palestine while the Fifth Committee considers and approves the UN budget as well as those of specialized agencies.

Cato and Chuasoto will serve as members of the bureau of the Fourth and Fifth Committees and will help steer the committee meetings when the 63rd Session of the General Assembly opens in September.

The last time the Philippines was a member of the bureau of any of the main committees of the General Assembly was in 2003.

The two Filipino diplomats joined the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1998 and 1999 respectively and were assigned to the Philippine Mission in New York in 2003. Both served as Alternate Representatives to the Security Council during the Philippine membership in that body from 2004 to 2005.

Aside from representing the Philippines in the Fourth Committee, Cato oversees Philippine participation in UN peacekeeping operations. Chuasoto, on the other hand, represents the Philippines in the Fifth Committee and also handles issues in the Security Council as well as ASEAN concerns in the United Nations.