New Head of Mission for TIPH

Karl-Henrik Sjursen is replacing Mr. Arne Huuse as Head of Mission of TIPH on the 2nd of February 2007. He will lead a group of 58 civilian observers from six countries. Mr. Sjursen served as Head of Mission of TIPH in 2001. (Hebron 02.02.2007)

Karl-Henrik SjursenKarl-Henrik Sjursen is replacing Mr. Arne Huuse as Head of Mission of TIPH on the 2nd of February 2007. He will lead a group of 58 civilian observers from six countries (Norway, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland and Turkey).

Mr. Sjursen served as Head of Mission of TIPH during 2001 (23 January 2001 – 14 January 2002). This was during a strenuous time, with numerous incidents and violence in the streets. During this period he made his utmost for the mission to stay in operation and at the same time ensure the safety of the observers despite a high level of violence in the area.

Mr. Sjursen is 60 years old. He is married and has two grown up daughters. In Norway he has been Chief of Police in the Police District of Haugesund since 1995. He also has a law degree and taught criminal law and international law at the Norwegian War Academy. He has been a policeman since 1970.

– I look forward to coming back to Hebron and to TIPH, Mr. Sjursen says. The situation is serious and I have no illusions on this being an easy task. But I am determined to fulfill the mandate of TIPH and not to compromise the agreements signed by the parties.

TIPH was established 10 years ago, based on a request by the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli government to assist them in their efforts to restore normalcy to the city of Hebron. More than 13 000 individual reports have been written by TIPH. In 2002 two members of the mission were killed. The mission was temporarily withdrawn after being attacked in February 2006 but is now back in full operation.

Hebron 02.02.2007