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SG/SM/16982
31 July 2015

Secretary-General Announces Closure of Ebola Emergency Response Mission as Core Objective Achieved, Oversight to Be Led By World Health Organization

The following announcement was made today by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

As we continue to actively strive to end the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, we have reached an important milestone in the global Ebola response.

The United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency Response — UNMEER — will close on 31 July.  The Mission has achieved its core objective of scaling up the response on the ground and establishing unity of purpose among responders in support of the nationally led efforts.  As of 1 August, oversight of the United Nations system’s Ebola emergency response will fully be led by the World Health Organization (WHO), under the direct authority of the WHO Director-General.  United Nations agencies, funds and programmes, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the United Nations Mission in Liberia and national and international partners have undertaken the necessary steps to enable this seamless transition.

I have determined that, to maintain the high-level, dedicated United Nations leadership needed to get to zero cases, the Ebola Crisis Managers will remain in the countries under the oversight of WHO and with the support of the United Nations Resident Coordinators and United Nations country teams.  In Liberia, this high-level United Nations leadership for the Ebola emergency response will be provided by my Deputy Special Representative and Resident Coordinator, with the support of the United Nations country team.  My Special Envoy on Ebola will continue to provide strategic guidance for the response.

The United Nations remains steadfast in its commitment to supporting the Governments of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone in getting to and staying at zero cases.  We have made considerable progress, but the crisis is not yet over.  At this critical juncture, additional resources are needed by the United Nations and partners to sustain full support to nationally led efforts to end the outbreak and to support recovery activities in affected countries.  I therefore urge Member States to sustain the financial and political support necessary to end the outbreak.

For information media. Not an official record.