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Friday, December 30, 2016

Welcome to the United Nations. It's your world.

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Welcome to the United Nations. It's your world.

29 December 2016 – Jan Eliasson took up the job of Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations in July 2012, and while the post has been challenging, it has not proved daunting for the Swedish national – a veteran of international affairs, with decades of diplomatic experience in world capitals and conflicts.
On a national level, Mr. Eliasson has served as his country’s Foreign Minister, Ambassador to the United States, State Secretary for Foreign Affairs, and even Ambassador to the United Nations.
On an international level, his service includes serving as the President of the 60th session of the UN General Assembly; the Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Darfur; the Secretary-General’s Personal Representative for Iran/Iraq and the first UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs. His areas of focus have included operations in Africa and the Balkans, as well as initiatives on landmines, conflict prevention and humanitarian action. In the early 1980s, Mr. Eliasson was part of the UN mediation missions in the war between Iran and Iraq, and he served as a mediator in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe in the early 1990s.
Mr. Eliasson spoke with UN News on the eve of Christmas about his service with the world body.
Jan Eliasson: It’s been a fantastic journey, with many ups, but also many downs, and with a sense of responsibility falling upon me and also feeling tremendous attachment to the people – not only the people in terms of ‘we, the people’ as in the UN Charter – but also all my great colleagues at UN Headquarters and in UN agencies and around the world. I have enjoyed more than anything else being out there in the field, whether it was to see refugees from Syria, or people who are peacekeepers in different parts of the world, and humanitarian workers, of course, where I also have my heart. It has been a fantastic experience and it will mark my life until the very end.

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