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Snr UN Appointments In Lebanon & Georgia Unveiled

Ban unveils senior UN appointments in Lebanon and Georgia

1 August 2008 - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced plans today to reassign several key leadership posts involving United Nations operations in Lebanon and Georgia.

Mr. Ban has informed the Security Council of his intention to appoint Johan Verbeke, his current UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, to the post of the Secretary-General's Special Representative in Georgia and head of the UN Observer Mission to that country (known as UNOMIG).

Mr. Verbeke will succeed Jean Arnault, who will be reassigned shortly, Mr. Ban's spokesperson Michele Montas told reporters.

A career diplomat from Belgium, Mr. Verbeke has extensive experience with the UN system, including as his country's Permanent Representative to the Organization from September 2004 to April this year.

The Secretary-General also informed the Council of his plan to appoint Michael C. Williams of the United Kingdom to replace Mr. Verbeke as Special Coordinator for Lebanon.

Mr. Williams has previously served as the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East peace process, and was most recently the UK Representative for the Middle East and Special Projects.

Ms. Montas said the Secretary-General was confident that the new appointments would ensure continued strong leadership on the ground in both Lebanon and Georgia.


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