3 MARCH 2021

The following is a near-verbatim transcript of today’s noon briefing by Stéphane Dujarric, Spokesman for the Secretary-General.

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Questions and Answers

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Question:  Yes.  Thank you, Stéphane.  I want to take you back to 2019 when the former Commissioner‑General of the UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees) was accused of misbehaviour, mismanagement and nepotism, etc.  I mean, there was a report that told that he was innocent.  And I quote Mr. [Pierre] Krähenbühl, because he said in recent interview, he said, “The Secretary‑General called me in November 2019 to let it be known that the charge of corruption and mismanagement and my relations with a key member of the staff had all been proper.”

So, in this interview, there are two questions that I want to ask you.  I ask these two question, not on behalf of him but as a journalist.  First, will there be an official apology issued from the UN to Mr. Krähenbühl?  Second, why the report has not been published so far?  Thank you.

Spokesman:  Look, I’m looking for my notes on this.  What I can, first of all, tell you is that the report by OIOS (Office of Internal Oversight Services) will be shared… the report by OIOS, which is an internal procedure, has been shared… is being shared at the request of Member States, and that’s the usual procedure.  But I will answer your question in writing in a little bit… in a moment.

[The Spokesman later shared the following:  I can say that the five investigation reports concerning senior managers raised issues that were to be addressed through the Secretariat or UNRWA accountability frameworks.  Accountability actions to the extent appropriate and available were taken and the matters are closed.  It can be confirmed that the findings of the reports were management related that did not rise to the level of fraud or misappropriation of funds.

In accordance with General Assembly resolution 59/272 from 2010, the OIOS investigation reports relating to former UNRWA management have been provided to Member States that requested them by the UN OIOS.  Member States that have not to date requested such information from OIOS may do so now and in the future.

For further information on the availability of OIOS reports, please refer to https://oios.un.org/content/reporting.]

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For information media. Not an official record.