Annan prevails on Robinson to stay on as UN's top rights official for one more year

Annan prevails on Robinson to stay on as UN's top rights official for one more year

Mary Robinson
Secretary-General Kofi Annan has prevailed on Mary Robinson, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, to remain in that office for an additional year, despite her previous decision to leave the post.

In a statement issued in Nairobi, where both officials are attending the semi-annual meeting of the UN Administrative Committee on Coordination, Mr. Annan recalled that Mrs. Robinson, whose current term of office is expiring in September, had announced two weeks ago that she would not seek a second term.

"That was a source of great regret, not only to me but to everyone concerned with human rights," the Secretary-General said. "Many governments, as well as representatives of civil society around the world, have urged her to reconsider."

Following their meeting last week in Geneva, and again on Monday in Nairobi, Mr. Annan announced that they had "discussed the timing of her departure, and I am delighted to say that I have prevailed on her, subject to approval by the General Assembly, to stay on for one more year."

Mrs. Robinson is the second person to serve in the position of High Commissioner, which was previously occupied by José Ayala Lasso following the post's establishment by the General Assembly in 1993.