UN temporarily closes Geneva headquarters due to lack of funds

UN temporarily closes Geneva headquarters due to lack of funds
United Nations Headquarters, Geneva. Credit: Wikimedia

The United Nations’ European headquarters in Geneva, known as The Palace of Nations, will remain closed until 12 January due to a liquidity crisis within the organisation. The decision has been taken to economise heating, electricity and maintenance costs.

Surging energy prices have strained the UN’s budget, necessitating the palace’s closure from 20 December to 12 January. This news was confirmed on Friday by UN spokesperson Alessandra Vellucci according to Swiss radio station SRF. Swiss broadcaster RTS had previously hinted at a temporary closure until 7 January.

However, the organisation continues to function with employees working remotely. Staff members, essential to onsite operations, retain access to the building. One of the wings will reopen for upcoming conferences.

The UN is grappling with cash flow problems caused in part by around fifty countries failing to fulfil their contribution payments, including the United States.

Constructed between 1929 and 1936, The Palace of Nations has served as the UN’s European base since 1966. Located in a prestigious park in Geneva, it houses numerous global governing bodies focusing on fields such as human rights, humanitarian aid, disarmament, economics, development, science and technology.

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