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Why does Brazil speak first at the UN General Assembly?

unga A curious quirk of United Nations history means that the opening speaker of every UNGA is Brazilian; this year, Jair Bolsonaro has the job
2019 will be Jair Bolsonaro’s debut at the UN General Assembly

Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro will give the opening speech at the United Nations General Assembly tomorrow morning, in what is his most important international appearance since taking office in January.

Mr. Bolsonaro will not just be among the first speakers, he will be the first, in what is an odd quirk of United Nations tradition, dating back to the 1940s.

As the story goes, in the primordial years of the UN, member states were hesitant to take the initiative to speak first at assemblies. In the second session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in 1947, diplomat Oswaldo...

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