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UNAMID probing Mission worker on sexual assault allegation

November 28, 2017 (EL-FASHER) - The hybrid peacekeeping in Darfur (UNAMID) said the Mission and the Sudanese authorities are investigating an allegation of sexual offences by a Mission worker.

Nigerian soldiers from the hybrid United Nations-African Union Mission in Darfur (Photo: Reuters)

“UNAMID received information that one of its civilian staff has been arrested and charged with sexual offences involving a minor,” said the Mission in a press release on Tuesday.

“UNAMID is working with relevant Government of Sudan authorities and has immediately taken steps to fully collaborate with their investigation, consistent with Secretary-General António Guterres’ policy to achieve visible and measurable improvements in the way the United Nations prevents and responds to allegations of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse,” it added.

According to the press release, “the Mission is collaborating with UN Country Team partners to ensure that the victim receives psycho-social care”.

It pointed out that UNAMID Joint Special Representative Jeremiah Mamabolo “reiterated his personal and institutional commitment to safeguarding the rights and dignity of the purported victim and ensuring that justice is done”.

“The Mission condemns, in the strongest possible terms, any instance of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse committed by UN personnel in the Darfur region. We are guided by a zero-tolerance policy on such abhorrent incidents and will not tolerate or condone the perpetration of such acts,” said Mamabolo.

It is noteworthy that more than 2000 complaints pertaining to sexual exploitation and violence have been filed against the United Nations across the globe during the last 12 years.

The hybrid mission has been deployed in Darfur since December 2007 with a mandate to stem violence against civilians in the western Sudan’s region.

It is the world’s second-largest international peacekeeping force with an annual budget of $1.35 billion and almost 20,000 troops.

(ST)