Ban Ki-moon's speeches

Statement by the Secretary-General on Algiers

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Bali (Indonesia), 11 December 2007

Words cannot express my sense of shock, outrage and anger at the terrorist attack on the United Nations mission in Algiers today. This was an abjectly cowardly strike against civilian officials serving humanity's highest ideals under the UN banner - base, indecent and unjustifiable by even the most barbarous political standard. We do not yet have an accurate count of the many casualties, both among UN staff and the local population. But our hearts go out to the victims. Their sacrifice cannot and shall not be forgotten. The perpetrators of these crimes will not escape the strongest possible condemnation - and ultimate punishment - by Algerian authorities and the international community.

I have instructed senior advisers from my Executive Office, UNDP and the Department of Safety and Security to proceed to Algiers immediately. We will take every possible measure to aid those injured in the attack and their families. The security of UN staff is paramount. We will take every measure to ensure their safety, in Algeria and elsewhere, beginning with an immediate review of our security precautions and policies.