NewsLocalNew UNSG representative in Cyprus formally assumes his duties

New UNSG representative in Cyprus formally assumes his duties

New Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General (SRSG) and Head of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) Colin Stewart has arrived in Cyprus to formally assume his duties, a UN press release said on Monday.

Stewart will also be the Deputy Special Adviser to the Secretary-General (DSASG) on Cyprus, it added.

Stewart succeeds Elizabeth Spehar, who completed her assignment on 30 November 30.

Speaking upon his arrival, he said: “I am honored to be here in Cyprus as the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Deputy Special Adviser.

“I am keenly aware of the importance of UNFICYP’s mandate for the lives of all Cypriots and I look forward to working with all of you and our partners in Cyprus.

“I would like to take the opportunity to pay tribute to my predecessor, Elizabeth Spehar, for her stalwart leadership of UNFICYP and the Good Offices mission.

“I look forward to continuing the work of the United Nations in Cyprus and hope to forge strong working relationships with all stakeholders and learn from them so that, together, we can hopefully bring a lasting peace to the island.”

Stewart will meet with the two leaders, other senior officials, civil society representatives, members of the diplomatic community, and the United Nations family across the island over the coming weeks.

Stewart, who until recently served as Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) (2017-2021), brings to the role a long record of leadership, diplomacy and effective management, with over 28 years of experience in peace and security and international affairs.

Prior to MINURSO, he served as Deputy Head and Chief of Staff of the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU) in Addis Ababa, and held appointments in several United Nations field missions, including as Acting Chief of Staff and Chief of Political Affairs at the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) (2007-2009).

He was a Canadian diplomat from 1990 to 1997, and  is a graduate of Laval University in Canada.  He is fluent in English and French.

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