KR Tribunal Seeks Retiring Official’s Successor

The Khmer Rouge tribunal is seeking a replacement for its international deputy director of administration, Michelle Lee.

The application period for the job, which was posted on the UN’s recruitment Web site Mon­day, closes on Nov 23.

The tribunal’s UN spokesman, Peter Foster, said Wednesday the position could be filled by Jan­uary. Lee had planned to resign next summer, when she will turn 60, the mandatory retirement age for UN employees hired before 1990, Foster said.

“We are advertising the position now because at that level it can take a long time to fill those posts,” he said. “We don’t want there to be any gaps or difficulty.”

He added that it has not yet been determined when Lee will actually step down. Once a new candidate is found, Lee may need to stay on for some months to ensure a smooth transition, he said.

Lee has spent more than 30 years at the UN, and was in charge of administrative support service for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda in Arusha, Foster said.

Job candidates must have an advanced university degree in business or management and at least 15 years of administrative experience, according to the posting.

The tribunal’s director of ad­min­istration, Sean Visoth, declin­ed to speak with a reporter Wed­nesday. Lee could not be reached for comment.

The job posting comes amidst a growing storm over management and leadership issues on both the international and Cam­bodian sides of the hybrid court.

In a confidential June report, two UN experts found that frustration with the administrative leadership had so corroded staff morale that they feared crucial staff members would continue to leave.

They also said parsimoniousness had, at times, prevented the court from working effectively, and that the UN leadership had failed to take a strong line with the Cambodian side of the court when necessary.


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