Thursday, October 9, 2008

'Dyfunctional' UN security led to Algiers bombing: panel

United Nations (PTI): A dysfunctional United Nations security management system, lack of adequate supervision, and significant lapses in judgment and performance played a major role in the 2007 terrorist bombing on UN offices in Algiers in which 17 staff members were killed, a probe panel has concluded.

The independent panel, which released a summery of its report on Wednesday, blamed politicisation of the security system for the deadly incident.

Officials explained that aggressive security measures by the UN are resented by the countries as they show they are insecure, something which no member state wants to admit.

Stating that politicisation seriously compromised the security, the panel said preoccupation of UN security officials with countries like Afghanistan and Iraq led to neglect of its offices in Algiers.

"The dysfunction of the present system is not attributable to a lack of resources alone," the panel said, recommending administrative action against six individuals and disciplinary proceedings against four others. "It is also attributable to a failure on the part of those who designed it and those who implemented it."

The names of the officials were not released as, a spokesperson said, they would be subjected to an inquiry to determine what action should be taken.

The Independent Panel on Accountability, headed by former UN Assistant Secretary-General for Legal Affairs Ralph Zacklin, was set up by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in June to examine whether any staff should be held individually accountable for the 2007 attack.

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