UN secretary-general to appoint Geir Peders as Syria envoy


Norwegian diplomat Geir Pedersen will be the new United Nations Syria envoy, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the U.N. Security Council in a letter seen by Reuters on Tuesday.

Diplomats speaking on condition of anonymity said Pedersen, now Norway’s ambassador to China, had the informal approval of the council’s permanent five members – Russia, China, the United States, France and Britain, Reuters reported.

“In taking this decision, I have consulted broadly, including with the Government of the Syrian Arab Republic,” Guterres wrote, according to Reuters.

“Mr. Pedersen will support the Syrian parties by facilitating an inclusive and credible political solution that meets the democratic aspirations of the Syrian people.”

Pedersen will replace Staffan de Mistura when he steps down for family reasons at the end of November.

Pedersen has also served as Norway’s ambassador to the United Nations. In 2005, he replaced de Mistura as then-U.N. chief Annan’s personal representative in southern Lebanon.

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