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New UN Envoy To Afghanistan Arrives In Country

New UN Envoy To Afghanistan Arrives In Country; Will Play Key Development Role

New York, Feb 16 2006

The new head of the United Nations Mission Assistance in Afghanistan (UN AMA) arrived in the war-ravaged country today, with one of his main roles in the months ahead being to coordinate a multi-billion dollar development plan for the South Asian nation.

UNAMA said that Tom Koenigs, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, arrived in the Afghan capital of Kabul this morning and over the next few days would hold meetings with officials from the Government, diplomats and UN staff.

“One of Mr. Koenigs’ key roles will be to co-chair the soon-to-be formed Joint Monitoring and Coordination Board, which will provide strategic coordination for implementation of the Afghanistan Compact,” UNAMA said, referring to a five-year development plan for the country that was launched last month.

Yesterday, the UN Security Council endorsed the plan, which calls for future partnership between the Afghan Government and the international community, saying it also welcomed pledges of $10.5 billion made by world leaders in January as part of the development framework.

Mr. Koenigs, whose appointment was announced by Secretary-General Kofi Annan in December 2005 succeeds Jean Arnault, who served as Special Representative for Afghanistan between February 2004 and February 2006.

The new head of UNAMA, who is a German national, previously served the world body in Kosovo and Guatemala, while before that he was active in regional and municipal politics in Germany.


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