Background

Mr. David Veness, Under-Secretary General for Safety and Security, joined the session to meet members of the Committee and share his thoughts on future work in this area.

He informed the Committee that the newly established Department of Safety and Security envisioned achieving the following main goals:

  • (Be) The world’s most effective, professional, flexible and supportive department of safety and security;     
  • (Have) Enhanced operational ability to enable and deliver the United Nations mission in the most demanding locations on the globe;     
  • (Work with) A team of men and women who are respected and envied as the gold medal standard of international safety and security achievement.

Discussion

Mr. Veness expressed his strong support for the originally proposed approach of funding field-related security costs from the regular budget of the United Nations.

He informed the Committee that he was engaged in a broad process of consultations with all constituencies, seeking candid and constructive cooperation so as to ensure the protection of the United Nations system staff. In particular, he was in the process of meeting with Designated Officials to resolve what he sees as an evident imbalance between what the system sought to do centrally and what could be de-centralized.

Action

The Committee:

  • Welcomed Mr. Veness to his new position and expressed its appreciation and support for the objectives of the new security arrangements as presented by him;
  • noted two specific issues for future consideration by DSS:  the appointment and role of Designated Officials in Headquarters duty stations (the DO role rotated in Rome but nothing existed in Geneva); and, that the inter-relationship between DSS and the specialized agencies needed to be looked at and improved.