United Nations, Aug 28 (IANS) Development and environment expert Satya S. Tripathi has been appointed an assistant Secretary-General and will head the UN Environment Programme’s New York office.

The appointment made Monday by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was announced by his Spokesperson Stephane Guterres.

Tripathi is now the third Indian at the senior levels of the UN hierarchy.

He has served the UN for 20 years in “Europe, Asia and Africa on strategic assignments in sustainable development, human rights, democratic governance and legal affairs,” Dujarric said.

Tripathi has been the Senior Adviser on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the UNEP since 2017.

A development economist and lawyer with over 35 years of experience, one of his key roles at the UN was as the UN Recovery Coordinator for the $7 billion post-tsunami and post-conflict recovery efforts in Aceh and Nias in Indonesia.

He also chaired the Committees on Laws and Treaties for the UN-mediated Cyprus unification talks in 2004.

Tripathi has commerce and law bachelors degrees and a masters in law from Behrampur University in Odisha.

Atul Khare, the Under-Secretary-General who heads the Department of Operational Services, is the senior-most Indian at the UN.

Nikhil Seth, the Executive Director of UN Institute for Training and Research, is at the level of an assistant Secretary-General according to last year’s Voluntary Public Disclosure listing of senior staff’s assets.

At the New York office of UNEP, Tripathi’s duties will include supporting development, coordination and implementation of system-wide strategies on environment for the UN and “catalysing transformative change” throughout the UN “to integrate the environmental dimension of peace, security and sustainable development,” according to the description of the post.