INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: Receipt of Letter From Unhcr High Commissioner

Published: Wed 29 Jun 2005 09:28 AM
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS GENEVA 001606
SIPDIS
DEPT FOR PRM/MCE, SS EXEC OFFICE
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREF UNHCR
SUBJECT: RECEIPT OF LETTER FROM UNHCR HIGH COMMISSIONER
ANTONIO GUTERRES ADDRESSED TO THE SECRETARY OF STATE
CONDOLEZZA RICE
1. (U) Mission has received the following letter addressed
to the Secretary of State Condolezza Rice.
Begin Text.
Madam,
As I take up my duties as High Commissioner, I wish to avail
myself of this opportunity to thank you for your support for
the work of UNHCR. It is an honour for me to serve these
vulnerable people and the international community in this
way, and I will do all I can to earn your continued support
for the Office.
During the past month, I have had the opportunity to read a
great deal and speak at length to UNHCR's senior managers,
representative in the field, and to many others who know the
organization well. This time has proved very instructive and
has helped to shape my thinking as I begin work and survey
the priorities of the next few months.
During the past few years, a great deal of work has been done
by UNHCR to adapt itself and its activities to the changing
external environment. My focus initially will be on the
prioritization and implementation of these many well-founded
initiatives. These relate to our fundamental responsibility
to provide protection and to the perceived separation between
protection and operations. They also include steps to ensure
the transparency and accountability of the organization,
which is crucial to our future. I believe also that
increased consultation with all actors in necessary for UNHCR
to meet the highest standards of performance in our
operations worldwide.
In all these areas, your support and collaboration is
essential. The success of our mission depends on you, both
as donors and active defenders of the principles UNHCR is
mandated to uphold.
Assuming office halfway through the year, I have both a good
sense of our current financial situation for this year and
the unenviable responsibility to recall our pressing needs
worldwide.
I am aware that most of UNHCR's funding comes from a limited
number of donors. My funding strategy will be two-fold:
maintaining an open and fluid discussion with our traditional
donors to strengthen partnerships with them and approaching
"non-traditional" donors to continue broadening our funding
base. I look forward to discussing this and other issues of
mutual interest with you during my mission to Washington next
week.
I warmly welcome the donor-led Good Humanitarian Donorship
initiative as an effort to respond to humanitarian needs.
From my side, I will do the utmost to ensure that UNHCR can
deliver its support as and when required, indeed in
collaboration with all parties.
Allow me to close by reaffirming my personal commitment to
the cause of refugees. I am honoured by the trust that the
Secretary-General and you have placed in me, and I wish to
SIPDIS
assure you that you can count on my full commitment to this
organization and to its great humanitarian cause.
Please accept, Madam, the assurances of my highest
consideration.
(handwritten) looking forward to our close cooperation).
Sincerely yours,
Antonio Guterres
2. (U) Mission will pouch the original letter under registry
number 6131639
Moley
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