‘Serious ethical abuses’ at highest level of UN agency for Palestinians, damning new report says

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Top officials at the United Nations Palestinian refugee agency engaged in “sexual misconduct, nepotism, and abuse of authority for personal gain” while the body struggled with an unprecedented funding crisis, a damning report has alleged.

UN investigators are now scrutinising the allegations within the internal ethics review, which suggests serious abuses at the highest levels of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), including the organisation’s commissioner general Pierre Krahenbuhl.

The report obtained by French news agency AFP alleges that Mr Krahenbuhl was involved romantically with a colleague who was appointed in 2015 to a newly created role of senior advisor to the commissioner general after an “extreme fast-track” process.

This enabled her to join him on business class flights across the globe, the report claimed.

Mr Krahenbuhl’s deputy is separately accused of bullying staff and manipulating the system to find a well-paid job for her husband during the agency’s 2018 financial crisis after the US, UNRWA’s biggest donor, cut all aid.

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