Kofi Annan survived the disasters of UN peacekeeping in Srebrenica and Rwanda, the bitter Security Council divisions over the Iraq war and the bombing of the UN headquarters in Baghdad. But the man described by some as the «secular Pope» is now more vulnerable than ever, because of growing scandal over his organisation’s mismanagement of sanctions and humanitarian aid to Iraq.

Calls for Mr Annan’s resignation were once restricted to ideologically driven hardline US conservatives. Now diplomats in New York are openly asking whether the secretary-general can re2_kommentar in office until the end of his term in December 2006.