UN chief "shocked" by charges against former General Assembly president

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John Ashe. UN File Photo/Paulo Filgueiras

Allegations of corruption involving a former president of the UN General Assembly have shocked the man at the head of the organization.

John Ashe, who presided over the chamber in 2013, was arrested in New York on Tuesday reportedly for accepting bribes.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was "shocked and deeply troubled" to learn of the allegations, according to his spokesperson.

Dianne Penn reports.

Mr Ashe, 61, is from the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda.

He is among six people who are facing charges of conspiracy and bribery related to alleged business deals.

UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said the organization had only learned about the "very serious allegations" on Tuesday morning.

"Of course, the Secretary-General was shocked and deeply troubled to learn this morning of the allegations against John Ashe, the former President of the General Assembly, which go to the heart of the integrity of the United Nations."

Mr Ashe had served as his country's ambassador to the UN prior to being elected president of the 68th UN General Assembly in 2013.

Dianne Penn, United Nations.

Duration: 43″

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