Former President of the U.N. General Assembly Vuk Jeremic says the Serbian government has put forward his candidacy to be the next Secretary-General of the United Nations.

Serbia's former foreign minister says the government made the decision at a session Tuesday. He says he will be traveling to New York shortly, where initial hearings have already begun.

An official Serbian government statement is expected later Tuesday.

Jeremic has told B92 television the candidacy presents "an honor and a privilege" and a "chance to improve the image of the country."

The secretary-general is chosen by the 193-member General Assembly on the recommendation of the 15-member Security Council. For the first time this year, all member states will have a chance to question candidates.

Jeremic was General Assembly president in 2012-13.