Geli Dneprovski, suspected by U.S. and British officials of being a Soviet KGB secret police agent took over the post of personnel director of European headquarters of the United Nations yesterday.
The job gives Dneprovski access to confidential files on about 3,000 U.N. employes in Geneva.
A Soviet citizen, Dneprovski was with the personnel division at U.N. headquarters in New York before his appointment to the Geneva post.
His appointment was protested by the United States and Britain.
"We are completely satisfied that Mr. Dneprovski is a Soviet secret service agent," a Western diplomat said yesterday.
"This sensitive position should not be filled by anyone from either of the two superpowers or even from a NATO or a Warsaw pact country."
[In Washington, the State Department said it had no comment on Dneprovski's assumption of his duties.]
U.N. Secretary General Kurt Waldheim ordered an investigation after Dneprovski's appointment in June when it was reported in the press that Soviet diplomat Vladimir Rezun, who had defected to Britain, had identified him as a colonel in the KGB. In July, William van den Heuvel, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva, filed an objection to the appointment.
Waldheim said he was unable to verify the KGB connection left it up to the Swiss government to give Dneprovski permission to live in Switzerland.
Switzerland gave its approval two weeks ago, saying it also had been unable to substantiate the Western claims.
Western diplomats believe that as many as half of the Soviet citizens either attached to U.N. agencies in Geneva or working at the Soviet mission are secret service agents.