UN launches first expert team on
Wed, 05 Mar 2008
New York - Experts will be on standby to help the United Nations
deal with crises around the world as part of a Mediation Support
Standby Team, the UN Department of Political Affairs said
Wednesday in launching its first such team.
The five-member team, that sent two members to Kenya this week,
will assist UN envoys charged with resolving crises and will spend
most of its time in areas prone to conflicts, said B Lynn Pascoe,
the UN undersecretary general for political affairs and a former
"Successful conflict mediation is a complex enterprise requiring
precisely the kind of mobile expertise this new team can provide,"
"Even the most experienced envoys cannot do it alone. They can
benefit from the kind of timely and expert advice that this team
has to offer."
The team is funded by the Norwegian government, but the UN
political affairs department has sole authority to manage the team
and its work, including dispatching the experts to hot spots.
The team is headed by Joyce Neu of the United States, the founder
and executive director of the Joan B Kroc Institute for Peace and
Justice at the University of San Diego. Other team members are
Jeffrey Mapendere (Zimbabwe), an expert on security arrangements;
Patrick Gavigan (US-Ireland) on transitional justice and human
rights; John McGarry (Canada) on power-sharing; and Andrew ladley
(New Zealand) on constitution-making.