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Geir Pedersen named new U.N. envoy to Syria

By
Daniel Uria
Kofi Annan (C) and then-U.N. Special Envoy to Lebanon Geir O. Pedersen (R) tour Beirut's bombed-out southern suburbs with Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora, other government officials and Hezbollah members of Parliament on August 28, 2006. Pedersen was appointed as U.N. special envoy to Syria on Wednesday. UPI File Photo
Kofi Annan (C) and then-U.N. Special Envoy to Lebanon Geir O. Pedersen (R) tour Beirut's bombed-out southern suburbs with Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora, other government officials and Hezbollah members of Parliament on August 28, 2006. Pedersen was appointed as U.N. special envoy to Syria on Wednesday. UPI File Photo | License Photo

Oct. 31 (UPI) -- Norwegian diplomat Geir Pedersen was appointed as U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres' new envoy to for Syria on Wednesday.

Guterres announced the appointment of Pedersen, who previously served in various rules at the United Nations, to replace Staffan de Mistura after he announced his resignation earlier this month.

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"Mr. Pedersen brings to this position decades of political and diplomatic experience, having served both in Government and United Nations capacities," the United Nations said.

Pedersen, 63, most recently served as Norway's ambassador to China since 2017 after serving as permanent representative of Norway to the United Nations from 2012 to 2017.

His previous work for the United Nations included serving as special coordinator for Lebanon from 2007 to 2008 and as personal representative of the secretary-general for Southern Lebanon from 2005 to 2007.

Earlier in his career Pedersen served as Norway's representative to the Palestinian Authority from 1998 and 2003.

Pedersen will be the fourth U.N. envoy to Syria after de Mistura, Kofi Annan and Algerian diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi held the post.

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