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‘We’ll never forget them’ — Guterres lays wreath for UN staff killed in 2011 Abuja blast

‘We’ll never forget them’ — Guterres lays wreath for UN staff killed in 2011 Abuja blast
May 04
18:08 2022

António Guterres, United Nations secretary-general, says the organisation will never forget its staff killed in the August 2011 bombing in Abuja

He said this on Wednesday while laying a wreath in honour of the deceased at the UN House in Abuja.

On August 26, 2011, a car bombing at the UN building led to the death of more than 20 persons — including 12 UN staff members.

Guterres described the deceased as “unsung heroes” who will continue to be an inspiration “as we carry their vital mission forward more than 10 years on”.

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“August 26, 2011 is a date that is burnt into the collective memory of the UN family. On that tragic date, an appalling terrorist attack on the UN House left 23 UN employees and civilians dead, and more than 60 injured,” he said.

“Those staff members who lost their lives were unsung heroes who proudly served Nigeria through our organisation’s work.

“They worked for organisations that continue to support Nigerians – UNDP, WHO, UNICEF, UNAIDS and UNODC. But they are also mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters and cherished friends. All but one were Nigerian nationals and today, we mark their tragic death from that dark day.

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“But we also celebrate the love and joy that they brought to their community and loved ones, and the inspiration they continue to provide as we carry their vital mission forward more than 10 years on. We will never forget them.”

He thanked the federal government for renovating the UN building, adding that the UN stands in solidarity with the victims’ families as well as Nigerians who face terror attacks in their communities.

He said the UN’s victim-centred approach aims to ensure that perpetrators of terrorism are held accountable.

He also gave the assurance that the body remains steadfast in its commitment to supporting a peaceful Nigeria.

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