UN diplomats: Portugal's Guterres tops poll for UN chief

U.N. diplomats say Portugal's former prime minister has topped the second informal poll to succeed Ban Ki-moon as the next U.N. secretary-general.

But unlike the first round, Antonio Guterres got two "discourage" votes, leaving the contest in play.

Two diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity because Friday's vote was secret, said Serbia's former foreign minister Vuk Jeremic moved up from third to second place followed by Argentina's Foreign Minister Susana Malcorra who jumped from eighth place to third place.

Slovenia's former president Danilo Turk, who came in second in the first round, dropped to fourth place in the secret Security Council vote.

The secretary-general is chosen by the 193-member General Assembly on the recommendation of the Security Council. Ban's second five-year term as U.N. chief ends on Dec. 31.