The United Nations Security Council deems it necessary to conduct an independent investigation on allegations of redirection of the World Food Program’s aid to Islamist rebels in Somalia, Reuters reports.
“There is a large consensus for the idea of an independent investigation that should be carried out,” Mexico’s envoy to the U.N., Claude Heller, said following a closed-door meeting of the council.
Heller did not provide details on the timing and scope of the investigation but expressed certainty that the probe will take place.
As much as half of food aid earmarked for impoverished Somalis has allegedly been diverted to corrupt contractors, al Shabaab militants and local U.N. staff, according to a report by a U.N. panel of experts tasked to monitor compliance with U.N. sanctions against Somalia and Eritrea. The report also revealed that a Somali businessman with ties to al Shabaab militants, who possibly received ransom paid for the release of kidnapped aid workers, served as a contractor for WFP and UNICEF.