UN chief ‘deeply saddened’ by Ethiopia plane crash which killed 157, including at least 21 UN workers

UN Photo/Mark Garten UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

This article is brought to you in association with the United Nations.


An Ethiopian  Airlines fight crashed shortly after take off from the capital Addis Ababa on Sunday, killing more than 150 people on board. The UN  Secretary-General António Guterres said in a statement that he was “deeply saddened at the tragic loss of lives” , as reports emerged that UN staff were also among the dead.

The Boeing airliner bound for the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, took off at 8:44 am local time, losing contact with air traffic control atj Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, just six minutes later, according to news reports. The plane was reportedly carrying passengers from more than 35 different countries.

Mr. Guterres conveyed his “heartfelt sympathies and solidarity to the victims’ families and loved ones, including those of United Nations staff members, as well as sincere condolences to the Government and people of Ethiopia”.

According to the UN Department of Safety and Security in Kenya, 19 UN staff perished in the crash. The World Food Programme (WFP) lost seven staff, the Office of the High Commissioner on Refugees (UNHCR) lost two, as did the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Sudan, World Bank and UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) each lost one staff member. Six staff from the UN Office in Nairobi (UNON) were also tragically killed.

The cause of the disaster is not yet known, although weather conditions were reportedly good and the plane went down in a field near Bishoftu, around 35 miles southeast of the capital.

The UN is in contact with the Ethiopian authorities and “working closely with them to establish the details of United Nations personnel who lost their lives in this tragedy” the Secretary-General stated.

The disaster happened on the eve of the UN Environment Assembly when Heads of State, environment ministers and thousands of others will convene for five days in the Kenyan capital.

UN officials express condolences, sadness

Many senior UN officials took to Social Media to express their condolences and sadness. On Twitter, José Graziano da Silva, Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) sent his “heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the bereaved families”, saying that one FAO staff member was among the victims.

Executive Director of the World Food Programme (WFP) David Beasley tweeted  that “the WFP family mourns today”, adding that “we will do all that is humanly possible to help the families at this painful time. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers”, he said.

In a statement issued later in th day, he said Mr. Guterres had called him “to express his solidarity and support for the WFP family, and I want to thank him and all of the others around the world for their expressions of condolences.”

“As we mourn, let us reflect that each of these WFP colleagues were willing to travel and work far from their homes and loved ones to help make the world a better place to live. That was their calling, as it is for the rest of the WFP family,” he added.

Houlin Zhao, ITU SecretaryGeneral tweeted his “sincere condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives in the  plane crash” Noting that two ITU staff were on the flight, he said: “Our colleagues in Addis are providing support to their families during this difficult time.”

“All of us at UNICEF mourn the tragic loss of our UN colleagues and all those who died in the Ethiopian Airlines crash today. May they rest in peace. Our thoughts are with their families and loved ones”, Henrietta H. Fore, Executive Director of the UN Children’s Fund, tweeted.

On behalf of the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), whose Headquarters are in Nairobi, Executive Director Maimunah Mohd Sharif tweeted here “deepest condolences and prayers to the Great Nation of Ethiopia and to the families of the passengers and crew members who lost their lives in this tragedy. May they rest in eternal peace”.

High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi issued a condolence statement saying: “UNHCR has suffered today a huge loss”.

IOM Director-General António Vitorino issued a statement expressing his deep sadness over the lives lost, “including a young IOM staff member Anne-Katrin Feigl”, who “was en route to a training course in Nairobi as part of her role as a Junior Professional Officer”.

Catherine Northing, Chief of the IOM Mission in Sudan where Ms. Feigl worked, called her “an extremely valued colleague and popular staff member, committed and professional”, saying “her tragic passing has left a big hole and we will all miss her greatly”.

As a mark of respect IOM said it would “fly its flag at half-mast at its offices tomorrow, as will the UN and it’s agencies”.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

The path to a greener future begins in our cities

Can the EU afford to block China’s business openings to Europe by denying her the ‘market economy status’?

UNICEF urges governments to repatriate thousands of foreign children stranded in northeast Syria

Can indoor farming feed the world?

Coronavirus fears may have driven over 300,000 UK smokers to quit

EU Top Jobs summit ended with no agreement: welcome to Europe’s quicksand!

Is Europe misjudging its abilities to endure more austerity and unemployment?

How did Facebook fool the Commission that easily during the WhatsApp acquisition?

Summer 2018 Interim Economic Forecast: Resilient Growth amid increased uncertainty

EU leaders agree to delay Brexit until 31 October

Plants, the ‘core basis for life on Earth’, under increasing threat, warns UN food agency

Marking Sir Brian Urquhart’s 100th birthday, UN honours life-long servant of ‘we the peoples’

Commission deepens criticism on German economic policies

Guterres appeals for ‘maximum restraint’ over Jammu and Kashmir, as tensions rise

Why do medical students have to emigrate to become doctors in 2017?

JADE Spring Meeting 2015- Europe’s Junior Entrepreneurs together for 4 days of networking, workshops and forward thinking

This simple digital solution could streamline global travel and boost trade during COVID – here’s how

Understanding the challenge surrounding the Covid-19 vaccine campaign

EU should set goal to end homelessness by 2030

‘Score a goal’ for humanity, says Mohammed, celebrating winning link between sport and development

A new report outlines the shipping industry’s plans for decarbonization

Wednesday’s Daily Brief: Guterres in Kenya, Prisoners sick in Iran, #GlobalGoals, Myanmar, Ukraine updates, and new space partnership

The Shifting Rhythms of Harmonious China: Ancient, Modern & Eternal

Mobile Technology in Nowadays Medical Practice: Is It a Safe Path?

Lies and reality about incomes and wealth in the EU

Why the West supports the yen’s devaluation and Japanese over-indebtedness

Eurozone stuck in a high risk deflation area; Draghi expects further price plunge

FROM THE FIELD: Turning waste into a business in the slums of Yaoundé, Cameroon

2018 Sakharov laureate Oleg Sentsov receives his award

Imported and EU fisheries products should be treated equally

Why saving our forests should be a global priority

Unemployment and exclusion brings EU cities to boiling point

EntEx Organises 5 Summer Schools for Young Entrepreneurs across Europe in June/July 2014

MasterCard @ MWC14: Innovation in times of regulatory uncertainty

6 things to know about coronavirus today, 1 April

This Syrian national has been trapped at Kuala Lumpur airport for 3 months

Will Boris Johnson’s victory lead to a no-deal Brexit or is there still time?

The G7 should take the lead on ocean targets for 2020

Crucial medical supplies airlifted to north-east Syria to meet ‘desperate need’

From landlocked to land-linked: how the UN is helping some of the world’s poorest countries

4 steps to using AI in an environmentally responsible way

The financial future of Eurozone on the agenda of Friday’s ECOFIN council

ECB’s Draghi favours a cheaper euro to serve all Eurozone countries

Why do medical students need to emigrate to become doctors in 2017?

Brexit: European Commission intensifies preparedness work and outlines contingency action plan in the event of a no deal scenario with the UK

Pharmaceuticals conceal drug side effects with the EU’s Court blessing

Team Europe contributes €500 million to COVAX initiative to provide one billion COVID-19 vaccine doses for low and middle income countries

An all-out fight for the EU budget

Libyan national conference postponed, nearly 500,000 children at ‘direct risk’ from fighting around Tripoli

If a virus could sing … Could this musical version of COVID-19 help us defeat the disease?

How electrification can supercharge the energy transition

‘Informing is not a crime’ UN chief calls for better protection of journalists, press freedom

Commission supports Member States in their transition to a climate-neutral economy

Closing the gaps in accelerating women’s rights: the role of medical students

Back to the Basics: Primary Healthcare

How can entrepreneurship tackle the migration crisis in the EU?

6 things to know about press freedom around the world

How to prevent a suicide?

UN food aid to Yemen will fully resume after two-month break, as Houthis ‘guarantee’ delivery

State aid: Commission approves €30 million Estonian measure to support Nordica in the context of the coronavirus outbreak

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s