United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres announced on 26 January 2021 the appointment of Khassim Diagne of Senegal as his Deputy Special Representative for Protection and Operations in the United Nations Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO).
Mr. Diagne succeeds David Gressly of the United States to whom the Secretary-General is deeply grateful for his dedicated service to MONUSCO.
Mr. Diagne brings to the position more than 25 years of experience in refugee protection, political affairs, management and oversight, having served since 2017 as Director of the Political, Peacekeeping, Humanitarian and Human Rights Unit in the Executive Office of the United Nations Secretary-General, and previously as Regional Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee (UNHCR) to the United States of America and the Caribbean.
His previous UNHCR positions include Representative in Liberia and Cameroon and Deputy Representative in Pakistan, while holding key roles in Côte d’Ivoire, Rwanda, Kenya and Somalia, as well as senior management and leadership positions at UNHCR Headquarters in Geneva serving as Head of the Governance and Partnership Service and Secretary of the Executive Committee during preparations for the 60th anniversary of the 1951 Refugee Convention. Mr. Diagne served as Political Affairs Officer in the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the Great Lakes region and was a member of the joint UN-AU team that organized the first International Conference on Peace, Security, Democracy and Development in the Great Lakes region in 2004.
He holds a Master of Arts degree from the Cheikh Anta Diop University of Dakar, Senegal, and a Master of Arts in International Relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, United States.