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Liberia, UN assures of continued protection

In northwestern Liberia, UN envoy assures population of continued protection

Visiting northwestern Liberia, the senior United Nations envoy to the country has assured residents that the international community will continue to support and protect them, the UN peacekeeping mission there (UNMIL) reported this weekend.

Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Representative, Alan Doss, travelled to Bopolu, in Gbarpolu County, on Friday to meet with the local authorities and to assess the general conditions on the ground one year after UNMIL deployed in the area. Gbarpolu County, in the northwestern part of the country, is one of Liberia's newest and least developed counties.

The envoy encouraged community members to inform UNMIL of any weapons still remaining in their community and urged them to stop and report rape as “there is no place for violence in the new Liberia – against anyone.”

The Gbarpolu County Superintendent, William Seh, praised UNMIL and the international community for restoring peace and stability to Liberia. He highlighted a number of challenges faced by the residents, including poor road conditions, the absence of medical facilities and the lack of schools.

Special Representative Doss reassured them that “UNMIL will not only continue to provide security to the country, but we are working with the government of Liberia and other UN and international partners to help meet the basic needs of the people.”

Addressing the Pakistani UN contingent deployed in the county, Mr. Doss expressed his condolences to the peacekeepers for the recent death of two soldiers who had contracted Lassa Fever. “We will remember their sacrifice, and I salute your determination to continue the work you started in Gbarpolu,” he said, adding that efforts were underway to stop the spread of disease in the area.

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