Job Opening

Posting Title: SENIOR POLITICAL AFFAIRS OFFICER, P5 (Temporary Job Opening)
Department/Office: Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on Cyprus
Duty Station: NICOSIA
Posting Period: 23 November 2021 - 29 November 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Political Affairs-SASG-CYPRU-167536-J-Nicosia (M)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

Org. Setting and Reporting

On 3 September 2008, the Leaders of the Greek Cypriot community and of the Turkish Cypriot community decided to start their full-fledged negotiations, under the good offices mission of the United Nations Secretary-General. The aim of the full-fledged negotiations is to find a mutually acceptable solution to the Cyprus problem, which will safeguard the fundamental and legitimate rights and interest of Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. The agreed solution will be put to separate simultaneous referendum. The role of the Office of the Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on Cyprus (OSASG) (also known as the Good Offices Mission) is to support the Secretary-General's Special Adviser (SASG) on Cyprus, whose mandate is to assist the parties in the conduct of negotiations aimed at reaching a comprehensive settlement.

The position is located in the Office of the Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on Cyprus, duty station Nicosia. Within delegated authority, under the general supervision of the SASG and Coordinator, the Senior Political Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:


Political Analysis and Advice

- Identify, analyze and monitor political developments and emerging issues in the country/region with respect to the implementation of the Office's mandate.
- Provide negotiation support to the negotiation process with a specific focus on governance issues, as well as on security and guarantees.
- Prepare analysis, assessments and reports on governance and security and guarantees issues and related matters in the context of the overall negotiations. Research key points of interest between the sides and options for specific approaches.
- Provide assessments to the Special Adviser outlining the implications for security and guarantees in the context of issues discussed in other chapters of the negotiations.
- Assess implications and make recommendations to the Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on possible policies, strategies and other measures to address issues of concern and to advance mandated objectives.
- Identify emerging issues and provide advice to the Special Adviser on approaches to the negotiations in Cyprus.
- Work with UN thematic expert on governance and EU matters to assess the positions of the parties and explore possible bridging options.
- Plan and undertake politically sensitive projects on behalf of the Special Adviser.
- Manage information to ensure its accessibility and utility.

Reporting and Information Management

- Prepare summary and analytical reports including, but not limited to, situation reports, briefing notes, options papers, code cables, and input for the reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council.
- Manages, coordinates, organizes and supervises research on a variety of political issues in Cyprus and in the region.
- Prepare and review contextual information materials, such as background notes, analytical materials and assessments on political and related policy options in support of the negotiations on issues related to governance and power-sharing.

Planning, Coordination and Facilitation

- Develop and maintain collaborative relationships with the authorities, political leaders and civil society actors, the broader UN family and other national and international partners including guarantors on coordination and policy matters.
- Consult and cooperate with partners to develop strategies and plans of action to address political challenges, in the context of the overall negotiations.
- Serve as a facilitator for Technical Committee's.
- Serve as the focal point of the OSASG on coordination of written materials, including input for the reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council.
- Plan and implement the operational activities related to the work of the OSASG in line with the Special Adviser's strategic vision and guidance as per the mandate to facilitate negotiations.
- Support preparations for official meetings, events and visits, including through the provision of secretariat services and by drafting talking points and speeches of senior UN officials.
- Participate in fact-finding – and other – missions.
- Prepare written summaries of meetings/visits and assist with follow-up activities, as appropriate.
- Monitor, evaluate and report on implementation.


- Assist with formulating and managing the implementation of the programme of work, including through support to planning and budgetary processes.
- Supervise, mentor, and evaluate staff including consultants, as required.
- Participate in the selection of new staff.
- Perform other relevant duties as required.


Professionalism: in-depth understanding of the political work of the United Nations, as well as knowledge and experience of political negotiations and capacity to adopt a strategic approach to the peace negotiations; sound analytical skills, with ability to assess complex political environments, identify problems, and propose policy options; proven drafting, reviewing and editing skills and experience; diplomacy, tact and judgment in dealing with others; conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments and achieving results; tact in negotiation skills; Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals. Solicits input by genuinely valuing others' ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others. Places team agenda before personal agenda. Supports and acts in accordance with final group decisions, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position. Shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

Accountability: Takes ownership for all responsibilities and honours commitments. Delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost, and quality standards. Operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules. Supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments. Takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, if any.

Leadership: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow. Empowers others to translate vision into results. Is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives. Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support. Anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions. Drives for change and improvement, does not accept the status quo. Shows the courage to take unpopular stands.

Building Trust: Provides an environment in which others can talk and act without fear or repercussion. Manages in a deliberate and predictable way. Operates with transparency, has no hidden agenda. Places confidence in colleagues, staff members and clients. Gives proper credit to others. Follows through on agreed upon actions. Treats sensitive or confidential information appropriately.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) degree in political science, international relations, international economics, law, public administration, or related field. A first-level university degree in combination with two (02) additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in political science, international relations, law, disarmament, security, development management, conflict resolution or related area is required.

Extensive experience in political analysis and diplomacy with a demonstrated ability to manage and coordinate many different levels and participants is required.

Experience with practices and procedures on conflict resolution in an international organization or government is desirable.

Experience in mediation and multilateral or bilateral negotiations is desirable.

Experience in providing political support and guidance to peacemaking, peacekeeping operations and/or good offices mission is desirable.

United Nations experience, in particular field experience with a United Nations Peacekeeping operation/Special Political Mission (SPM) and professional experience in the region is desirable.


Fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

• This position is temporarily available until 31 October 2022. If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment.

• While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post.

• Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply.Submitting an application or selection for the current temporary job opening does not delay or increase the mandatory age of separation.

• Retirees above the mandatory age of separation who wish to be considered for the current temporary job opening must indicate the reason for their last separation as "retirement." Such retirees shall not be employed by the Organization, unless (a) the operational requirements of the Organization cannot be met by staff members who are qualified and available to perform the required functions; and (b) the proposed employment would not adversely affect the career development or redeployment opportunities of other staff members and represents both a cost-effective and operationally sound solution to meet the needs of the service.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


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