(Ex-)Foreign ministers I have known

Working in international relations means you get to meet a lot of people who have been foreign ministers and want to keep their hand in. Thanks to the excellent list at http://www.rulers.org/ I’ve been able to spend an idle half-hour listing them. Those still in office (updated March 2006) are in bold.

I know 8 directly through my employers:

Australia/Evans: My boss.

Belgium/Eyskens, Canada/McDougall, Poland/Geremek, Sweden/Hjelm-Wallén, Thailand/Pitsuwan, Finland/Stenbäck, Norway/Stoltenberg: all on our board of trustees.

Several more have become friends via Balkan conferences (to the extent that I would feel comfortable calling them up for a cup of coffee if I were in town):

Bosnia/Ivanic, Prlic and Lagumdzija – though Prlic is currently awaiting trial for war crimes, and Lagumdzija so absent-minded I doubt he would recognise me
Albania/Starova – have spent all day today at a conference with him in Rome
Bulgaria/Daskalov – we wrote a paper together in 2000
Romania/Celac, Severin
Montenegro/Jovovic, Lukovac, Milacic (actually Milacic was only ever acting Foreign Minister, and they’re not independent as yet so these probably don’t count)

From my involvement, minimal as it was, in Irish politics, I’ve met Brian Cowen and Garret Fitzgerald (both visible hereDermot Ahern at various times, respectively after, during and before their times as foreign minister

For a while I was responsible for speaker meetings at the Centre for European Policy Studies in Brussels and so organised speeches for the following, some of them already ex-foreign ministers at the time and all now out of that particular office:
Czech Republic/Kavan
Netherlands/van der Stoel
Turkey/Türkmen – I embarrassed myself by asking how he had become foreign minister, and didn’t quite know what to say when he told me that he was appointed by the military after the 1980 coup

I’ve had also had face-to-face meetings with the following:

Andorra/Minoves Triquell
Italy/De Michelis
Macedonia/Kerim, Mitreva

And finally I exchanged words with Jack Straw at a public meeting last year.

I don’t think I’ll be updating this list as often as the books I have read…

Further updates

January 2005: Montenegro/Vlahovic, Slovenia/Rupel
February 2005: East Germany/Meckel
April 2005: Albania/Islami
May 2005: Croatia/Grabar-Kitarovic
July 2005: South Ossetia/Dzhioev (NB not recognised by anyone else)
October 2005: Albania/Mustafaj
March 2006: Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus/Denktash (NB not recognised by anyone else except Turkey)
April 2006: Austria/Ferrero-Waldner, Portugal/Barroso, Netherlands/de Hoop Scheffer
September 2006: Sweden/Bildt (not that I met him again, but he became foreign minster)
December 2006: Montenegro/Rocen
First half of 2007: A few more to add: Macedonia /Milososki (actually met him in late 2006); TRNC/Avci; and two people who I had met previously became foreign ministers, Bosnia-Herzegovina/Alkalaj and France/Kouchner.

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