American University in Cairo honours UN staffer killed in Baghdad terror attack

The Fund “will honour her legacy by supporting education and opportunity for countless students from her country and the region,” said Nagwa Shoeb, a spokesperson for the University, which hopes to raise $300,000 for the initiative.In another tribute to Ms. Younes, an Egyptian national, the school has designated The Nadia Younes Conference and Meeting Room in the Model United Nations Centre. It will serve as the focal point for the students to prepare for Cairo International Model United Nations, which Ms. Shoeb called the University’s “most sought-after activity.”Ms. Younes, who had taken courses at the American University in Cairo, joined the UN in 1969, eventually working as Deputy Spokeswoman for then Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar. She also headed the UN Information Office in Rome, worked as Chief of Protocol in New York, and led the UN’s communication team in Kosovo. At the time of her death, she was officially posted to a top-level job at the World Health Organization (WHO).In Baghdad, she was on what was supposed to be a four-month posting as a senior aide to Sergio Vieira de Mello, the top UN envoy in Iraq, who was also killed in the blast.The Nadia Younes Annual Lecture will also be created and endowed with the resources to invite accomplished international leaders to address the University. In addition, The Nadia Younes Award for Public and Humanitarian Service will be established, allowing the University to recognize and reward the graduating senior who has exhibited the most commitment to community and humanitarian service. “This award will be an exceptional tribute to Mrs. Younes’ service as well as to the student who has achieved this honour,” Ms. Shoeb explained.Addressing the University last week, Nadia’s brother, Fouad Younes, voiced gratitude for the initiative. “We are convinced that it is the most appropriate manner in which to continue to honour Nadia’s memory so that it may serve as a lasting example to today and tomorrow’s students of what a hard working life dedicated to the United Nations can achieve,” he said.In New York, a spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan welcomed the Fund’s establishment, saying it was a fitting tribute to an extraordinary staff member who contributed significantly to the cause of peace, even at the cost of her own life.

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