The president of an international think tank has resigned following revelations that he accepted a loan from accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein and secured $650,000 in donations from foundations linked to Epstein for the peace organization.
A CNN report indicate that the International Peace Institute, based across the street from the United Nations, announced that diplomat Terje Rød-Larsen had apologized to the institute’s board and resigned as president and CEO on Thursday.
The IPI said it was unaware of the Epstein transactions.
Larsen was a key broker of the 1990s Oslo Middle East peace accords and represented the UN on several peace assignments around the globe.
Citing the office’s independence and status, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said the UN secretary-general, after a review, has decided not to serve in any capacity in the governance of any outside entity.
The institute is an independent organization that promotes UN causes. It was founded 50 years ago with the assistance of former UN Secretary-General U Thant.
IPI board Chairman Kevin Rudd, the former Australian prime minister, denied IPI was aware of the Epstein-related donations or the personal loan to Larsen until media reports in the veteran diplomat’s home country of Norway.