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Secretary-General Appoints Khassim Diagne of Senegal Deputy Special Representative for Protection, Operations in Democratic Republic of Congo

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres today announced the appointment of Khassim Diagne of Senegal as his Deputy Special Representative for Protection and Operations in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO).

He succeeds David Gressly of the United States, to whom the Secretary-General is deeply grateful for his dedicated service.

Mr. Diagne brings to the position more than 25 years of experience in refugee protection, political affairs, management and oversight, having served since 2017 as Director of the Political, Peacekeeping, Humanitarian and Human Rights Unit in the Executive Office of the United Nations Secretary-General.  He was previously Regional Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee (UNHCR) to the United States and the Caribbean.

His previous UNHCR positions include Representative in Liberia and Cameroon and Deputy Representative in Pakistan, and he has held key roles in Côte d’Ivoire, Rwanda, Kenya and Somalia.  He has also served in senior management and leadership positions at UNHCR headquarters in Geneva, where he was Head of the Governance and Partnership Service and Secretary of the Executive Committee during preparations for the sixtieth anniversary of the 1951 Refugee Convention. 

Mr. Diagne also served as Political Affairs Officer in the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the Great Lakes region, and was a member of the joint United Nations-African Union team that organized the first International Conference on Peace, Security, Democracy and Development in the Great Lakes region in 2004.

He holds a master’s degree from the Cheikh Anta Diop University of Dakar, Senegal, and a master’s degree in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, in the United States.


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