independent

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Mary Robinson appointed to new UN role in Africa

Mary Robinson

FORMER president Mary Robinson has been appointed to a special role within the United Nations to oversee the troubled Great Lakes region of Africa.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon confirmed Ms Robinson would be tasked as the UN Special Envoy for the region, where her role would include helping to promote peace in the troubled Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

Ms Robinson (68), the former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, was understood to be Ban Ki Moon’s top choice for the post. Security council members had until this afternoon to make any objections to her appointment.

 

African leaders signed a UN-mediated peace accord late last month designed to try bring to an end two decades of conflict in eastern Congo.

 

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Eamon Gilmore, said Ms Robinson’s “skills and experience”, along with her global reputation, made her the “ideal choice” for the role.

 

Mr Gilmore said Ireland has had a lengthy and significant involvement in efforts to promote peace and stability in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

“The challenges will only be met and overcome through resolute African action,” he said.

 

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