The United Nations faces unprecedented security challenges in many regions of the world, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the General Assembly’s budget committee today, as he sought support for almost $300 million in new funding to make the Organization and its staff safer. “We have been adapting to new security threats for many years now, but the latest threats compel us to go further still,” he said, highlighting a recent attack on a guest house in Afghanistan that killed five UN staff members.Mr. Ban told an informal meeting of the Fifth Committee that his proposal for almost $300 million over the next two years aimed to strengthen and unify the UN security management system. “I would also like to underscore the importance of meeting emergency needs, particularly in the light of recent attacks,” said Mr. Ban, adding that he remains deeply concerned about the security situation in Afghanistan.The Committee is currently examining the Secretary-General’s proposed budget of $5.06 billion to cover the work of the UN Secretariat for 2010 and 2011, which represents real growth of $22.4 million, or half a percentage point, over the previous biennium.Given the global economic downturn, Mr. Ban stressed that his proposed budget only includes the highest priority projects and call for only “modest” increases. “We all recognize the need to constantly modernize our infrastructure, stay abreast of technological developments, and strengthen performance,” he said. “It can be the difference between progress and poverty, and even a matter of life and death.”Among the other issues Mr. Ban addressed were the appointment of a special adviser on Africa, the funding of a development account, and the recruitment of the next chief of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS). “As Chief Administrative Officer, I am committed to management reform and to greater transparency, accountability and efficiency,” said Mr. Ban. 7 December 2009The United Nations faces unprecedented security challenges in many regions of the world, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the General Assembly’s budget committee today, as he sought support for almost $300 million in new funding to make the Organization and its staff safer.