Where can I find information on the Independent Panel of Experts and investigations into the death of Dag Hammarskjöld?
Last Updated: Dec 10, 2019     Views: 1767

In 1961, the United Nations appoints a UN Commission of Inquiry to clarify the conditions and circumstances resulting in the death Hammarskjöld and members of the party accompanying him.

26 October 1961 - General Assembly decides an investigation into the crash should be conducted and appoints a UN Commission of Inquiry. A/RES/1628(XVI)

Commission Members:

  • Rishikesh Shaha (India), Chairman
  • Raùl Quijano (Argentina), Rapporteur
  • Samuel Bankolè Jones (Sierra Leone)
  • Emil Sandström (Sweden)
  • Nikola Srzentić  (Yugoslavia)

The UN Commission of Inquiry, held between 1961 and 1962, reaches an open verdict on the cause of the crash. 

24 April 1962 -  A/5069 + Add.1, Report of the commission of Investigation into the conditions and circumstances resulting in the tragic death of Mr. Dag Hammarskjöld and members of the party accompanying

26 October 1962 - The General Assembly passes resolution A/RES/1759 (XVII)  requesting the Secretary-General inform the Assembly of “any new evidence which may come to his attention."  

Current Investigation Timeline

2011 -  Who Killed Hammarskjöld: the UN, the Cold War and white Supremacy in Africa by Susan A. Williams is published. The book sparks renewed interest in circumstances surrounding Hammarskjöld’s death.

July 2012 - In response to Dr Williams’ book, the Hammarskjöld Commission, a voluntary body of four international jurists, is assembled. The Commission is not affiliated with the United Nations and has no formal legal status.

9 September 2013 - The Commission produces the Hammarskjöld Commission Report. The report suggests that new evidence has emerged showing that the plane carrying Hammarskjöld may have been shot down en route to peace negotiations in what is now Zambia.

21 March 2014  - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon informs the General Assembly that new evidence relating to Dag Hammarskjöld's death has come to his attention and transmits the Hammarskjöld Commission Report. A/68/800

11 December 2014 - A resolution, A/69/L.42, is drafted, requesting the Secretary-General appoint an independent panel on the investigation. 

15 December 2014  - Ambassador Per Thöresson of Sweden introduces draft resolution on Investigation into the conditions and circumstances resulting in the tragic death of Dag Hammarskjöld and of the members of the party accompanying him

29 December 2014 - The General Assembly approves resolution A/RES/69/246, which requests Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon appoint an independent panel of experts to examine new information that has emerged on the death of Hammarskjöld.

16 March 2015 – The United Nations announces the members of the Independent Panel of Experts tasked with examining new information related to the tragic death of former Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld and his party in September 1961.

Panel members:

  • Mr. Mohamed Chande Othman (United Republic of Tanzania) as Head of the Panel
  • Ms. Kerryn Macaulay (Australia)
  • Mr. Henrik Larsen (Denmark)

12 June 2015 Independent Panel of Experts submits its report on its findings, conclusions and recommendations to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

6 July 2015 -  Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon conveys report of the Independent Panel of Experts to the President of the General Assembly along with his own observations.

19 November 2015 - General Assembly adopts without a vote A/RES/70/11. The resolution urges all Member States, in particular those addressed in the Panel’s report, to release any relevant records in their possession and to provide Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with relevant information related to those deaths.

17 August 2016 - Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon submits a note to the General Assembly (A/70/1017) as a follow-up to the Report of the Independent Panel of Experts (A/70/132). 

5 September 2017 - Secretary-General António Guterres transmits the report of the Eminent Person, Mohamed Chande Othman, on the inquiry into the death of Dag Hammarskjöld (A/71/1042).

24 December 2017 - General Assembly adopts without a vote A/RES/72/252. The resolution requests the Secretary-General to reappoint the Eminent Person appointed pursuant to General Assembly resolution 71/260 to continue to review potential new information. 

Dec 10, 2019     1767


Disclaimer: answers are prepared by library staff using resources available at the time of writing. This site may include links and references to third-party databases, websites, books and articles, this does not imply endorsement by the United Nations.


Ask Dag Logo

Explore more than 800 FAQs in: