Press Releases

    DSG/SM/144
    31 October 2001

    ISMAT KITTANI "BROUGHT SKILL AND JUDGEMENT TO ANY
    ASSIGNMENT, NO MATTER HOW SENSITIVE", SAYS DEPUTY
    SECRETARY-GENERAL AT MEMORIAL SERVICE

    NEW YORK, 30 October (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the text of remarks by Deputy Secretary-General Louise Fréchette at the General Assembly Memorial Service for Ismat Kittani in New York today:

    We have gathered to pay tribute to an unforgettable member of our United Nations family. Ismat Kittani was a friend, colleague, mentor and inspiration to countless people. He was loved by those who knew him, and respected by all who came in contact with him. For several decades, our Organization benefited from his wisdom, experience, and diplomatic acuity, as well as his human warmth and kindness.

    Both in the service of his country and as an official of the United Nations –- including a distinguished term as President of the thirty-sixth General Assembly -- he was an accomplished diplomat, combining the discretion of the international civil servant with an intimate knowledge of the intergovernmental process. He brought skill and judgement to any assignment, no matter how sensitive. He brought professionalism and objectivity to all his work, no matter how arduous. As important, he brought a great deal of warmth and humour to this House.

    When he retired from the staff of the Organization, he said in his farewell remarks that none of us is forced to work for the United Nations; that we do so because we believe in its ideals. Ismat Kittani was someone who helped us all sustain that belief, and who made our work here even more rewarding. As we express our condolences today to his family and loved ones, let us also give thanks for the example he gave all of us. Let us be inspired by it as we confront the many challenges ahead. Thank you.

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