Ging and Shenstone to leave UNRWA

Posted: January 18, 2011 by Rex Brynen in Gaza, UNRWA, West Bank

Image: Ma'an News Agency

As most PRRN blog readers will likely already know, Barbara Shenstone (UNRWA director of operations for the West Bank) and John Ging (UNRWA director of operations for Gaza) will be leaving the Agency. According to the official statement by UNRWA spokesperson Chris Gunness:

17 January 2011

The Director of UNRWA Operations in Gaza, John Ging, and Barbara Shenstone, Director of UNRWA Operations in the West Bank, are to leave the Agency. John Ging is to take up a senior position in the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in New York and Ms Shenstone is to return to her native Canada. Mr Ging has served UNRWA for nearly five years, Ms Shenstone for nearly four.

Making the announcement to UNRWA staff, Commissioner-General Filippo Grandi said: “Barbara and John have made exceptional contributions to UNRWA’s work under the most difficult circumstances: their commitment to ensuring the quality of UNRWA services has been extraordinary; their advocacy in support of rights has been outstanding – be it amidst heavy bombardment in Gaza during armed conflict or in responding to the abysmal rights abuses in the occupied West Bank. I salute the courage, strength and determination of their innovative leadership. I – and all of us – will miss them both as colleagues and for their extraordinary contributions to UNRWA and the refugees we serve.”

You can find further coverage of their departures (but few additional details) from the Ma’an News Agency, al-Jazeera, the Jerusalem Post, and the Guardian. We wish them both well.

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