Kieran Prendergast

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"Kieran has a unique range of experience in international affairs. He was Under Secretary General of the United Nations for Political Affairs, and in this role served as the Senior British member of United Nations Secretariat and was chief foreign policy adviser to the United Nations Secretary-General for more than eight years (1997 – 2005), responsible for managing crises in places as varied as Congo, Cyprus, Afghanistan, Israel/Palestine, Iraq and East Timor. Prior to this role, he led a distinguished career in the British Foreign Office as British Ambassador to Turkey (1995 – 1997); British High Commissioner to Zimbabwe (1989 – 1992) and to Kenya (1992 – 1995); Head of Southern Africa Department in the Foreign Office (1986 – 1989) during a critical period in bringing apartheid to an end and Namibia to independence; and as Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy in Israel (1982 – 1986). He had also served as Deputy Private Secretary to two Foreign Secretaries (1976 – 1979 – Anthony Crosland and David Owen).

"Kieran has particular expertise in the wider Middle East (including Afghanistan, Iraq and in the Middle East Peace Process), Central, East and Southern Africa as well as the Horn of Africa, and the eastern Mediterranean. He is fluent in Turkish and French. He was educated in Australia (St Patrick’s, Sydney), Salesian College, Chertsey, and St Edmund Hall, Oxford (Oriental Studies).

"Kieran has remained active in the field of conflict management and resolution. His positions include: Senior Adviser to the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue in Geneva; Chairman of the Anglo-Turkish Association; Trustee of the Beit Trust; member of the Council of Experts of the Democratic Progress Institute; member of the International Advisory Board of the NGO Independent Diplomat; and member of the Advisory Board of the strategic communications group Albany Associates. He was also a Senior Adviser to BHPB from 2006 to 2009, where he chaired numerous country entry workshops and represented BHPB at Board meetings of the International Crisis Group, and was Chairman of the UN Follow Up Committee on Nigerian withdrawal from Bakassi Peninsula (2006 – 2009). He is also a Patron of the Beyond Borders Literary Festival, and, in 2012, was appointed Counsellor to the English Speaking Union."[1]


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  1. Dragoman Consulting PEople, organizational web page, accessed February 23, 2015 .