A third U.N. staffer has been put on administrative leave over a video that shows an apparent sex act in an official U.N. vehicle in Israel — the latest development in an ongoing investigation into the scandal.
“A third male international staff member who was in the UN vehicle in Tel Aviv has also been identified as having engaged in alleged misconduct,” a statement by the U.N. Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) said.
“The staff member has been placed on Administrative Leave Without Pay, pending the results and conclusion of the ongoing [Office of Internal Oversight Services] investigation,” the brief statement said.
The move is in response to the video, which published last month by Inner City Press, an online outlet that for years has shined a light on corruption at the world body. The video shows a woman in a red dress straddling a man in the back seat of a vehicle with U.N. markings as the motorist drives off.
The footage quickly went viral online and the U.N. announced that it would be investigating the matter. A spokesman for U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that the chief was “shocked and deeply disturbed by what is seen in the video” and that it “goes against everything that we stand for and have been working to achieve in terms of fighting misconduct by U.N. Staff.”
Shortly after, the UNTSO announced that two male staffers in the vehicle were put on leave after having been identified “as having engaged in misconduct, including conduct of a sexual nature.”
The UNTSO also said that it has “re-engaged in a robust awareness-raising campaign to remind its personnel of their obligations to the U.N. Code of Conduct.”
The organization was set up in 1948 to monitor ceasefires in the region. According to its website, observers “remain in the Middle East to monitor ceasefires, supervise armistice agreements, prevent isolated incidents from escalating and assist other United Nations peacekeeping operations in the region.”