|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
SECRETARY-GENERAL SENDS CONDOLENCE MESSAGE TO MEMORIAL CEREMONY
FOR MISSION STAFF KILLED IN NEPAL HELICOPTER CRASH
Following is the text of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s message to the memorial ceremony in Kathmandu today, 18 March, for staff of the United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN) who perished in a helicopter crash:
It is with profound sorrow that I send you my condolences as you honour those who died in the tragic helicopter accident two weeks ago. My heart goes out to the families and loved ones of those who perished, and to UNMIN staff who have lost irreplaceable colleagues and friends.
The loss of these courageous and dedicated individuals was a terrible blow to the entire United Nations family. Their commitment and professionalism will never be forgotten. Reading the hundreds of condolences that have poured in from around the world, I am struck by the tributes to the many qualities of these colleagues, who are described as respectful and loyal, caring and kind.
Your sadness is shared by all the United Nations family, but felt most acutely in UNMIN. As one colleague put it: “To have served with and known colleagues Lieutenant Colonel Bhim Bahadur Gurung, Rabindra Khaniya, Rajesh Maharjan, Colonel Hyung Jin Park, Lieutenant Colonel Sondang Irawan, Major Famara Jammeh, Major Mats Norhult, Dmitry Malyshev, Nikolay Yamshchikov and Sergey Oreshenko was an honour.”
May the exceptional men we lost on 3 March 2008 rest in peace. Let us all, families and colleagues, be proud of their service. Even as we mourn their passing, let us rededicate ourselves to realizing lasting peace in Nepal. This will be the best tribute to their memory, a legacy that will stand for generations to come.
* *** *For information media • not an official record