Ahmed Ali Aboul Gheit
Egypt

Ahmed Ali Aboul Gheit

Minister of Foreign Affairs

Date of Birth: 12/06/1942
Place of Birth: Heliopolis

Education: Bachelor's degree in Commerce, AinShams University, 1964.

Career: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 1965 to date.

Commentary: Born 1942 in Cairo, Ahmed Aboul Gheit  joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1965, the year after completing his bachelor's degree . In his first overseas assignment was as attaché to the embassy in Cyprus from 1968 to 1972. Others included the Soviet Union (1979-1982) and Italy (1992-1996).
The diplomat has been closely involved in his country's relations with the United Nations, with frequent participation in Egypt's mission there. He was Egypt's representative to the UN from 1999 to 2004. After leaving the UN he was made Minister of Foreign Affairs by then-Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif from 11 July 2004 to 6 March 2011.

Cairo's chief diplomat Ahmed Aboul Gheit assured the smooth functioning of the fourth Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC IV) held in Sharm El-Sheik on 8-9 November (see Feature). Egypt promised to use its position at the crossroads of Africa and the Middle East to support expanded Chinese activities. Before the summit, Gheit assured his Asian counterparts that the disagreements which threatened other regional summits would be absent from FOCAC IV.

In October, Gheit caused the postponement of a summit of the Mediterranean Union - a French-led group of European, North African and Middle Eastern countries. The Istanbul conference, to be held 27 November, was called off when Gheit refused to meet Israel's Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman. Gheit, who claims to have the Arab League's full backing for the snub, is defending the honour of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, whom Lieberman last year told to 'go to hell' in a speech to the Knesset, Israel's legislature.

Another summit promises controversy. Ahead of February's Franco-African summit, also to be held in Sharm El-Sheik, French Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux suggested to the hosts that Sudanese President and International Criminal Court indictee Omer Hassan el Beshir be excluded from the talks. Egypt is not pleased.Beshir was one of several presidents who attended the ministerial FOCAC IV.

Born 1942 in Cairo, Gheit studied commerce at AinShams University, earning a bachelor's degree in 1964. He joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs the following year. His first overseas assignment was as attaché to the embassy in Cyprus from 1968 to 1972. Others included the Soviet Union (1979-1982) and Italy (1992-1996).

The diplomat has been closely involved in his country's relations with the United Nations, with frequent participation in Egypt's mission there. He was Egypt's representative to the UN from 1999 to 2004. After leaving the UN he was made Minister of Foreign Affairs by then-Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif from 11 July 2004 to 6 March 2011.


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Vol 47 N0 20

EGYPT | AFRICA

Pride and prejudice

The Foreign Ministry, under Ahmed Aboul Gheit, has also played a role...

Vol 45 N0 22

EGYPT

A government of economics and security

Foreign Minister: Ahmed Aboul Gheit...

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