On Staff Day Fréchette praises unsung heroes who died working for the

“Here at the Headquarters, we do not have to worry about a perilous working environment, stepping on a landmine or being ambushed on a lonely road where no laws prevails. Some of our colleagues do,” Ms. Fréchette said at the memorial ceremony held at the UN Headquarters in New York, and organized by the UN Staff Union, for the 37 civilian and military personnel who lost their lives since October last year.Ms. Fréchette stressed that the UN should never slacken its efforts to protect staff wherever they may serve. “Minimum operating security standards are being put in place at all duty stations. We are in the process of developing a unified framework with enhanced coordination among all parts of the Organization and clear lines of accountability,” she said.“We have made tremendous progress over the past year in making security an integral priority in all operations,” Ms. Fréchette noted. “The number of staff members who lost their lives in the service of the Organization this past year is the lowest since 1992.”She urged her colleagues not to forget the fallen heroes or lose faith in the overall purpose for which they gave their lives. “But let us also send our thoughts to those staff members who continue to work in the most difficult of conditions, helping those who need it most, and trying to bring peace and hope to troubled regions,” Ms. Fréchette said.The Deputy Secretary-General also reminded UN Member States of their responsibilities in improving security and fighting impunity by arresting and prosecuting those responsible for violence against peacekeepers and humanitarian workers.Also speaking at the memorial service were Ambassador Luis Gallegos Chiriboga of Ecuador, Acting President of the General Assembly, and Ambassador Valery P. Kuchinsky of Ukraine, who paid homage to the 62 Spanish troops and 12 Ukrainian crewmembers who died in a plane crash in north-west Turkey on 26 May while returning from service with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. read more