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Ukrainian unit in UN Lebanon force to be replaced in financial misconduct probe

Ukrainian unit in UN Lebanon force to be replaced in financial misconduct probe

An investigation has shown significant financial misconduct by the Ukrainian military unit in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), including the commanding officer, and they are to be replaced, a UN spokesperson said today.

The findings, in a report of a UN Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) investigation requested by UNIFIL, have been shared with the Ukrainian Government, which has confirmed its readiness to take prompt action to investigate these allegations.

“Both the UN and the Government of Ukraine are taking this matter very seriously,” spokesperson Marie Okabe told the regular noon briefing. “The UN has initiated action to replace the Ukrainian unit in UNIFIL and is taking necessary measures to prevent a recurrence.”

The Ukrainian Government has sent its own team to Lebanon to investigate and has informed the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO) that it has already taken disciplinary action against the individuals concerned and is putting into place measures to eliminate any recurrence, steps that it will communicate to DPKO.

“Ukraine is long-standing and important troop contributing country and has a history of dedicated service with UN peacekeeping operations,” a UN news release said. “The new Government of Ukraine and the UN share a commitment to best practices in peacekeeping.”

“The UN will consider carefully all measures taken by the Government of Ukraine and looks forward to working with the Government to address the issue effectively and enable Ukraine to make further contributions to the maintenance of international peace and security,” it added.