2018-12-17 18:53:00

The new Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General to Iraq, Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, pledged Monday continued United Nations support for Iraq in its post-conflict recovery.

"I am delighted to be here in Baghdad and ready. We will continue our efforts in support of Iraq as the country recovers from the fight against terrorism and looks towards a brighter future," a statement by UN mission to Iraq quoted Plasschaert as saying.

"It is my intention to make the wellbeing of the Iraqis a top priority, and work towards that goal in the security, humanitarian, political, economic and development fields," she said.

Also on Monday, the Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohammed Ali al-Hakim received Plasschaert at his office on the occasion of starting her tenure in Iraq, a statement by the Iraqi Foreign Ministry said.

Al-Hakim congratulated Plasschaert for assuming the new post in Iraq and expressed "his hope for further cooperation with the United Nations in all areas, particularly in support of displaced people and projects of supporting women and children and other topics that support the Iraqi government and society."

For her part, Plasschaert, who is also head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), thanked the Iraqi minister for the cooperation and coordination with UNAMI, confirming the continued support of the United Nations for Iraq in all fields to contribute to its lasting stability, according to the statement.

Plasschaert, 45, a Dutch politician and diplomat, brings over 20 years of political and diplomatic experience, having served in several high-level government and parliamentary positions. She served as a member of the European Parliament from 2004 to 2010, and was also Minister of Defense of the Netherlands from 2012 to 2017.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appointed Hennis-Plasschaert on Aug. 31, 2018 as his Special Representative for Iraq and Head of the UNAMI to succeed Jan Kubis who has served in the post for almost four years.