24 July 2006

Six-Month Investigation into Conduct of Iraq Special Representative Concludes No Evidence to Substantiate any Allegations

NEW YORK, 21 July (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) has completed its investigation into a number of allegations relating to the conduct of the Secretary-General's Special Representative in Iraq, Ashraf Qazi.  The allegations had been made by a former staff member of the UN Mission in Iraq.  Following a six-month review of all the allegations, including extensive interviews, review of relevant documents and visits to Baghdad, OIOS concluded that, with the minor exception of Mr. Qazi initially failing to repay personal telephone calls, there was no evidence to substantiate any of the allegations.

The Secretary-General welcomes the release of the final report.  He has consistently stated that he has full confidence in Mr. Qazi's personal integrity and expresses his regret that Mr. Qazi has had to suffer unnecessary and unjustified distress as a result of the false allegations and subsequent investigation.  The Secretary-General very much regrets that a former United Nations employee should have chosen to attack Mr. Qazi in this groundless way.  A formal note will be placed in the former employee's official file noting the OIOS findings and stating that he should not be employed by the Organization in the future.

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