Secretary General Antonio Guterres has extended the term of Atul Khare, the highest ranking Indian civil servant at the U.N., as the Under- Secretary General for Field Support till April 2018. Khare plays a key role in tamping down the sexual abuse and exploitation scandal in U.N. peace-keeping operations.
“The Secretary General has decided that the mandate of senior officials working in the Peace and Security pillar should be maintained for another one year,” his spokesperson Farhan Haq said Feb. 15. This also related to Guterres setting up a team to review the working of the UN in order to carry out his promise of reforming the U.N.
“This important work will require both expertise and experience from principals and all staff members,” Guterres said while announcing the review.
Khare will also serve on the U.N.’s Senior Management Group, the high-level body chaired by the Secretary-General that deals with policy and planning matters across the U.N. A medical doctor by training, Khare joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1984 and has since served in several UN positions, many relating to peacekeeping.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had appointed Atul Khare of India as Under-Secretary-General for Field Support, Department of Field Support ion January 2015. He succeeded Ameerah Haq of Bangladesh.
Khare brings to the position strategic management and innovative reform expertise in both headquarters and field perspective. Currently providing charitable medical advice in India, Khare has a long senior career with the United Nations, most recently as Assistant Secretary-General leading the Change Management Team (2011-2012) and Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations and Deputy Head of the Department of Peacekeeping Operations in New York (2010-2011).
He was previously Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Timor-Leste and Head of the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) at the level of Under-Secretary-General (2006-2009), working earlier as Chief of Staff and Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General with the United Nations Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET).
Former Director of The Nehru Centre and Minister (Culture), High Commission of India in London (2005-2006), Khare served during his tenure with the Indian Foreign Service in its diplomatic missions in France, Mauritius, Senegal, Thailand and the United Kingdom, as well as the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations in New York.
Khare holds bachelor’s degrees in medicine and surgery from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, as well as master’s degrees in business administration and leadership from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia.