International News Article | Reuters.com
: "WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States voiced support for U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan on Tuesday but some officials said they were unsure if he would survive in his post after a critical inquiry into the U.N. oil-for-food program.
The independent probe led by former U.S. Federal Reserve chairman Paul Volcker on Tuesday cleared Annan of interfering in the award of a contract under the scandal-plagued U.N. oil-for-food program in Iraq to a firm that employed his son.
However, the investigation faulted Annan for not having investigated possible conflicts of interest properly.
'Secretary-General Annan and the United States share a common commitment to working together to reforming the United Nations, and we will support him in his efforts to do that,' State Department spokesman Adam Ereli said when asked if the U.S. government had confidence in Annan.
'This is a very serious matter,' said White House spokesman Scott McClellan. 'Congress has been looking into it as well. We continue to support the United Nations. We continue to support Secretary-General Annan in his work at the United Nations.'
Privately, U.S. officials said Washington did not know how the investigation would play out and the administration would therefore be circumspect in its comments about Annan."