UN mourns after Ethiopian crash kills 21 staff



Delegates at the UNEP world environmental forum observe a minute’s silence in memory of the victims of Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET 302 plane crash, at the United Nations complex within Gigiri in Nairobi. PHOTO | BAZ RATNER | REUTERS 

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Flags flew at half-staff at the United Nations on Monday after 21 UN staff were killed in an Ethiopian Airlines plane crash that Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said marked a “sad day” for the world body.

Guterres lead delegates at the opening of the annual gathering on women’s rights at the General Assembly in observing a moment of silence in honour of the victims.

“A global tragedy has hit close to home – and the United Nations is united in grief,” he said at the Commission on the Status of Women.

UN ambassadors opened a Security Council meeting on Afghanistan by standing in silence for the victims of Flight ET302, which crashed Sunday shortly after take-off from Addis Ababa. All 157 people on-board were killed.

Among the dead were many traveling to a UN environment conference in Nairobi.

The World Food Programme, the UN refugee agency UNHCR, the International Organization for Migration and the UN Environment agency all lost staff in the crash.

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