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Former UN Chief Boutros Boutros-Ghali Dies


On Tuesday, the U.N. Security Council announced the death of former U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali.

On Tuesday, the U.N. Security Council announced the death of former U.N. Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali.


This is What’s Trending Today….

Boutros Boutros-Ghali was the United Nations Secretary General in the first part of the 1990s.

He died in Egypt on February 16. He was 93. His name became one of the top trending topics worldwide on Twitter on Tuesday.

An Egyptian newspaper, al-Ahram, reported Boutros-Ghali died due to complications from a broken pelvis. An Egyptian diplomat, Boutros-Ghali was elected to a five-year term as U.N. Secretary General in 1991.

The Washington Post wrote Boutros-Ghali presided over the U.N. during two of the world’s worst genocides.

Hundreds of thousands of people from the Tutsi and Hutu ethnic groups in Rwanda were killed during his term. Boutros-Ghali called it, “my worst failure.”

About 100,000 also died during the civil war in Bosnia.

The New York Times called his term “a chaotic period.”

It was marked by diplomatic conflicts with the United States over Bosnia and a failed raid in Somalia that resulted in the death of 15 Americans. The event was documented in a film called “Black Hawk Down.”

The Washington Post also noted there were regular disagreements between the U.S. and the U.N. over unpaid dues, totaling close to $1.5 billion.

After leaving the U.N., Boutros-Ghali wrote in his memoir of the difficulty in dealing with American President Bill Clinton. He wrote, “His mocking pronunciation of my name – Boo-trus, Boo-trus – sounded like a jeering mob.”

While there were many tweets and messages of support for Boutros-Ghali’s family upon the news of his death, there were also some references to his unique name.

One person wrote “God, I loved that man’s name.”

Others were quick to reference a viral video that Boutros-Ghali appeared in after his term ended.

Boutros-Ghali did an interview with comedian Sacha Baron Cohen. Baron Cohen was known in the late 1990s and early 2000s for playing a character called Ali G.

Cohen, as the loud, ill-informed street personality Ali G, interviewed celebrities and politicians on his television show. Many of them were flustered by his act, but Boutros-Ghali was praised for handling the interview with poise.

And that’s What’s Trending Today.

I’m Dan Friedell.

Dan Friedell wrote this story for Learning English. Hai Do was the editor.

Who do you remember from Boutros-Ghali’s term? We want to hear from you. Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.

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Words in This Story

chaotic – adj. in a state of complete confusion or disorder

pelvis – n. the wide curved bones between the spine and the leg bones

poise – adj. showing a calm, confident manner

flustered – adj. upset or nervous

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