UNITED NATIONS, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- UN
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has launched an immediate internal investigation
into hazardous material from Iraq found in a UN building, UN Deputy Spokesperson
Marie Okabe announced Friday.
In a statement released by the spokesperson, Ban, who
is attending a senior leadership meeting in Italy, said he takes very seriously
the late discovery of potentially hazardous material at the UNMOVIC office in
"He has given immediate instructions to launch an
internal investigation drawing on external expertise in close cooperation with
the U.S. and New York City authorities," Okabe told reporters at the UN
Headquarters in New York.
In addition, the Secretary-General also asked the
Under-Secretary-General for Safety and Security Services and the
Under-Secretary-General for Management to immediately return to headquarters.
They are to provide substantive support to the Deputy
Secretary-General and the Chef de Cabinet who have both canceled their
participation to the meeting in Italy, in order to closely monitor the situation
on his behalf, the spokesperson said.