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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Turkish diplomat named new UN special envoy for assistance to Pakistan

27 September 2010 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today appointed Turkish diplomat Rauf Engin Soysal as the new United Nations Special Envoy for Assistance to Pakistan, replacing Jean Maurice Ripert of France, who has served in the post since last August.

Mr. Ban created the special envoy position last year to help the Government and the international community to respond to needs in the wake of Pakistan’s displacement crisis, which at its peak had forced over 2 million people from their homes in the country’s north-west.

He thanked Mr. Ripert for the important contribution he made over the past year in mobilizing assistance to internally displaced persons (IDPs) and the emergency phase of the recent flood crisis.

Mr. Soysal, who is currently Deputy Undersecretary for Bilateral Political Affairs responsible for the Middle East, South Asia and Africa, brings with him extensive experience in bilateral and multilateral diplomacy and in-depth knowledge of the region, according to a press statement accompanying the announcement.

He is also Turkey’s representative on the group of Special Representatives (SRAP) for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and served as Ambassador to Pakistan between January 2007 and July 2009.

UN agencies and their partners earlier this month launched their largest-ever natural disaster appeal, seeking more than $2 billion to provide assistance for up to 14 million people affected by the floods in Pakistan over a 12-month period.

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