By Michael Hernandez
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres congratulated Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Monday following Ramallah's assumption of the chair of the G-77 group of nations.
Abbas met with Guterres earlier in the day at UN Headquarters in New York as Palestine took on the lead role in the largest intergovernmental organization of developing countries and China.
Guterres "expressed his wishes for a successful year for the Group" during the closed-door meeting, the UN said in a statement.
Abbas also met with UN General Assembly President Maria Fernanda Espinosa.
In October, the UN General Assembly endorsed Palestine's G-77 presidency with 146 members voting in favor and the U.S., Israel and Australia opposed.
As head of the group, Palestine -- which is a non-member observer state -- will be able to act as a member state and exercise its right to reply as a member of the bloc.
As a non-member observer state, Palestine has the right to vote on some General Assembly resolutions and participate in UN organizations.