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NEW YORK - 15 Jun 2020

UN chief appoints new UNISFA force commander

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on Monday announced the appointment of Major General Kefyalew Amde Tessema of Ethiopia as Force Commander for the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA). 

Tessema succeeds Major General Mehari Zewde Gebremariam of Ethiopia who will complete his assignment on 7 July 2020. 

“The Secretary-General is grateful for his tireless dedication and effective leadership of UNISFA,” UN spokesperson said in a statement.

Major General Tessema has a distinguished military career with the Ethiopian Armed Forces spanning more than 30 years.  He has also been a Council Member of the Ethiopian Ministry of National Defence since 2017. 

Most recently, Tessema served as the Head of Main Engineering Department of the Ethiopian National Defence Forces, responsible for planning, coordinating, managing, organizing, training and reporting on related engineering activities.  

Previously, he served as the Western Command Commander from 2017 to 2018,  Deputy Central Commander from 2016 to 2017 and the Division Commander from 2012 to 2016, among other appointments within the Ethiopian Armed Forces.  In 2015, he served as an AMISOM Sector Commander in Somalia. 

Major General Tessema holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Ashland University in the United States and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Command and Control of Military Unity and Formation from the Russian Federation Compound Force Academy. 

Tessema was born in 1969 in Arsi, Ethiopia.