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In Memoriam: Andrey Vasilyev

Geneva, 2 October 2019    

I am deeply saddened to announce that Mr. Andrey Vasilyev, the Deputy Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), passed away this morning in Geneva, Switzerland, after a long illness.

Mr. Vasilyev had a distinguished career of almost 30 years at UNECE and in the global UN Secretariat. He was appointed as Deputy Executive Secretary on 1 April 2010. Previously Mr. Vasilyev served as Director of UNECE’s Economic Cooperation and Integration Division and, from 2003 to 2006, as Director of UNECE’s Technical Cooperation Unit. His expertise and leadership left a lasting mark in our Commission and were instrumental in promoting economic integration and cooperation in the region and in supporting our membership in realizing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Before joining the UNECE Secretariat, Mr. Vasilyev worked as a Senior Programme Officer for the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) in New York which he joined in 1993. From 2001 until September 2002, Mr. Vasilyev was the Principal Coordinating Officer in the Secretariat of the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development held in Johannesburg. He joined the United Nations in 1992 as an advisor for the Secretariat of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, which took place in Rio de Janeiro Brazil in June 1992.

Prior to his work for the United Nations he worked for the Permanent Mission of the USSR (Russian Federation) to the United Nations in New York where he was an advisor and negotiator on various economic and environmental issues, from 1987 to April 1992.

Andrey will be remembered fondly by his colleagues in Geneva and the world over. He was a strong leader with a clear vision and a deep commitment to the goals and values of the United Nations. Colleagues appreciated him as a very approachable manager who always kept his door open to all staff, and as a knowledgeable and dedicated international civil servant. Many are proud to call him not only a colleague but a friend. 

Our thoughts and prayers go to his family and friends.

We will strive to honour Andrey’s memory by continuing his work in our Commission for the benefit of the people of our region, a calling that was so close to his heart.  

May Andrey rest in peace.

Olga Algayerova
Executive Secretary, UNECE

A condolence book has been opened and is available in the Palais des Nations, room S-366, from 3 – 10 October 2019, 9:00 - 17:00. If you wish to transmit condolences remotely, kindly send your messages to the email: Executive.Secretary@un.org.