New UN Task Force to Check Sexual Exploitation Cases

On his first day at work, António Guterres, the new United Nations Secretary-General, addresses staff members. UN Photo / Rick Bajornas
On his first day at work, António Guterres, the new United Nations Secretary-General, addresses staff members. UN Photo / Rick Bajornas

The United Nations announced Friday that it plans to strengthen its approach to preventing and responding to sexual exploitation and abuse by creating a task force that will develop a strategy to achieve improvement.

The announcement follows a request from Secretary-General António Guterres to Jane Holl Lute, the Special Coordinator for improving the Organization’s response to sexual exploitation and abuse, according to a UN spokesperson.

In addition to Ms. Lute, the members of the task force are:

  • William L. Swing, Director-General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM);
  • Atul Khare, Under Secretary-General, Department of Field Support (DFS);
  • Stephen Mathias, Assistant Secretary-General, Office of the Legal Affairs (OLA);
  • Christian Saunders, Director, Office of the Under Secretary-General of the Department of Management (DM);
  • Lieutenant General Carlos Humberto Loitey, Military Adviser, Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO);
  • Alfredo W. Forti, Special Consultant to the Secretary-General;
  • Nancee Bright, Chief of Staff, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict; and
  • Francesca Marotta, Chief, Methodology, Education and Training Section, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)

Members of the task force, all of whom hold official positions within the UN system, will use the upcoming Report of the Secretary-General on Special Measures for Protection from Sexual Exploitation to present element of the strategy.

The Secretary-General has said that he wants the strategy developed “as a matter of urgency,” and that Member States and relevant organizations across the UN System are to be widely consulted.

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Rakesh Raman