Geneva –IOM Director-General António Vitorino expressed the organization’s deep sadness upon learning that this past weekend’s tragic Ethiopian Airlines accident claimed the lives of all 157 aboard, including a young IOM staff member Anne-Katrin Feigl and 18 others working in Africa for United Nations’ related agencies.
Ms Feigl, a German national, was en route to a training course in Nairobi as part of her role as a Junior Professional Officer.
Staff members from at least five UN and affiliated organizations are understood to have also perished on the Ethiopian Airlines flight ET302 from the capital city Addis Ababa to Kenya’s capital Nairobi. There were some 32 nationalities on the doomed flight.
Alongside IOM, these include the World Food Program (WFP), the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the UN Environment Program (UNEP). The World Bank and others also lost colleagues in the tragedy. The tragedy has deeply affected the entire UN family, DG Vitorino said, extending his deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Anne Feigl, those of other UN organizations as well as other passengers and crew.
Catherine Northing, Chief of Mission of IOM Sudan where Anne Feigl worked, said:
"She was an extremely valued colleague and popular staff member, committed and professional.
The staff are in a state of shock. One colleague said today ´she was always bringing happiness to us.’ Her tragic passing has left a big hole and we will all miss her greatly."
Added Senior Regional Migrant Protection Specialist Tim Howe, another colleague: “Anne was one of the kindest colleagues I worked with. She worked on Migrant Protection in the truest sense of it - compassionate and driven. We (I) will keep her memory as inspiration. Ruhe in Frieden, Anne -wir vermissen dich.”
In her memory, IOM flew its flag at half-mast at offices all over the world on Monday.