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“Guterres talks to Trump” on second day as UN secretary general

Radio station RFM was one of the first to announce this evening that Portugal’s former prime minister António Guterres, newly-stepped into the role of UN secretary general, has been in telephone contact with president-elect Donald Trump today, and the call was “very positive”.

On his second day in what has been described as “the world’s most demanding job”, Guterres was making good on a pledge to organise a meeting with the incoming American president “as soon as possible”.

What (else) was discussed during the call, or indeed how long it lasted, are details so far being kept under wraps.

UN spokesman Farhan Haq simply reported at the UN’s daily press conference that it had been an opportunity for Guterrres to present himself to the man who has been making some extremely provocative remarks about the intergovernmental organisaton.

Guterres was also preparing the way for “another conversation with the President”, said Haq, suggesting any face-to-face meeting will have to wait for post-January 20, when Trump is due to be officially sworn in as the 45th president of the United States.

Trump’s transition team has meantime confirmed the two men’s conversaation, stressing that the president-elect is keen to see reform at the UN to make it “more efficient”.

This is an ambition already voiced by Guterres (click here), thus predictions that two of the world’s key players could be on a different page – fanned by reaction to Trump’s multiple generalistic tweets – may well be misplaced.

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