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UN chief names new force commander of UN mission in South Sudan


UNITED NATIONS, June 17 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon on Tuesday announced the appointment of Lieutenant-General Yohannes Gebremeskel Tesfamariam of Ethiopia as the force commander for the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS).

Lieutenant-General Tesfamariam succeeds Major-General Delali Johnson Sakyi of Ghana, who completed his assignment on June 9, said Ban's spokesman in a statement to the press here.

Lieutenant-General Tesfamariam brings to the position 35 years of experience with the Ethiopian National Defence Forces and the United Nations in conflict-affected areas, including as the Head of the Peacekeeping Department and Head of the Military Intelligence Department in the Ethiopian Ministry of National Defence and as Commander of the Army Corps and the government of Ethiopia Commissioner for the United Nations Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea.

Most recently, Lieutenant-General Tesfamariam served as the head of mission and force commander of the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei.

Lieutenant-General Tesfamariam has a master's degree in peace and security from Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. Born in 1960 in Tigray, Ethiopia, he is married and has three children.