UN official convicted for sexual abuse

An official of the United Nations mission in Kosovo (UNMIK), Rashidon Khan, has been sentenced to three years in jail for molesting a minor. Khan, a Pakistani, was arrested last January on charges of molesting a person less than 16 years of age and of falsifying an official document. He pleaded guilty to both charges.

At the time of arrest Khan was the head of Pristina office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, but there was no comment from UNMIK.

Allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation by UN staff more than doubled last year, UN secretary general Kofi Annan said in a report in May.

Most of the allegations, which include rape, sexual assault and sex with minors, involved UN peacekeepers. In June, the UN Security Council held its first ever session dedicated to the issue.

Prince Zeid Raad Zeid al-Hussein, special advisor to the secretary general on sexual abuse within the UN, said however rare they may be, abuses by peacekeepers were not only repugnant, but tarnished the credibility of both the operation in question and the United Nations as a whole, AKI reports.


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