The new United Nations chief said he wants to meet with Donald Trump even as the U.S. president-elect renewed his call for major changes at the global organization.
Incoming UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who assumes his new post on January 1, said on December 28 that he wants to "establish a constructive dialogue" with Trump as soon as possible.
"It is certainly in my interest to visit him as soon as possible," he said. "The United States is not only the main donor of the United Nations but a fundamental element in its actions."
Trump indicated on December 28 that he will use U.S. funding leverage over the UN to try to force major changes, although he has not specified what they would be.
"The UN had such tremendous potential. It's not living up to its potential," Trump told reporters in Florida. "When do you see the United Nations solving problems? They don't. They cause problems."
"So If it lives up to the potential, it's a great thing. If it doesn't, it's a waste of time and money," he said.
Trump has said repeatedly that he expects changes at the UN after he is inaugurated on January 20.
Based on reporting by AFP and dpa