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Boutros Boutros-Ghali

Boutros Boutros-Ghali

Introduction

About

Boutros Boutros-Ghali (14 November 1922 – 16 February 2016) was an Egyptian politician and diplomat who served as the sixth Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1992 to 1996. An academic who previously served as acting foreign minister and vice foreign minister of Egypt, Boutros-Ghali oversaw the UN over a period coinciding with several world crises, including the Breakup of Yugoslavia and the Rwandan genocide.He went on to serve as the first Secretary-General of La Francophonie from 1997 to 2002.

Boutros Boutros-Ghali was born in Cairo, Egypt, on 14 November 1922 into a Coptic Orthodox Christian family.His father Yusuf Butros Ghali was the son of Boutros Ghali Bey then Pasha (also his namesake), who was Prime Minister of Egypt from 1908 until he was assassinated in 1910.His mother, Safela Mikhail Sharubim, was daughter of Mikhail Sharubim (1861–1920), a prominent public servant and historian.The young boy was brought up by a Slovenian nanny, one of the so-called Aleksandrinke ; he was closer to Milena, "his invaluable friend and confidant", than to his own mother.

Boutros-Ghali graduated from Cairo University in 1946.He received a PhD in international law from the Faculty of Law of Paris (University of Paris) and diploma in international relations from Sciences Po in 1949. During 1949–1979, he was appointed Professor of International Law and International Relations at Cairo University. He became President of the Centre of Political and Strategic Studies in 1975 and President of the African Society of Political Studies in 1980. He was a Fulbright Research Scholar at Columbia University from 1954 to 1955, Director of the Centre of Research at The Hague Academy of International Law from 1963 to 1964, and Visiting Professor at the Faculty of Law of Paris from 1967 to 1968. In 1986 he received an honorary doctorate from the Faculty of Law at Uppsala University, Sweden.He was also the Honorary Rector of the Graduate Institute of Peace Studies, a branch of Kyunghee University Seoul.

Boutros-Ghali's term in office remains controversial. In 1992, he submitted An Agenda for Peace, a suggestion for how the UN could respond to violent conflict. He set three goals: for the UN to be more active in promoting democracy, for the UN to conduct preventative diplomacy to avert crises, and to expand the UN's role as peacekeeper.[15] Although the goals were consistent with those of US president George H. W. Bush, he nevertheless repeatedly clashed with the United States, especially with his efforts to involve the UN more deeply in the civil wars in Somalia (1992) and in Rwanda (1994). The United States refused to send peace enforcement units under UN leadership.[16]

Boutros-Ghali was criticised for the UN's failure to act during the 1994 Rwandan genocide, during which over a half million people were killed.[17][18] Boutros-Ghali also appeared unable to muster support in the UN for intervention in the continuing Angolan Civil War. One of the hardest tasks during his term was dealing with the crisis of the Yugoslav Wars after the disintegration of the former Yugoslavia. The UN peacekeeping force was ineffective in Bosnia and Herzegovina, forcing the intervention by NATO in December 1995. His reputation became entangled in the larger controversies over the effectiveness of the UN and the role of the United States in the UN.

The US journalist Mark Bowden argues that he was responsible for an escalation of the Somalia crisis by undertaking a personal vendetta against Mohamed Farrah Aidid and his Habar Gidir clan, favouring their rivals, the Darod, the clan of the former dictator Siad Barre. It was believed[weasel words] that he demanded the 12 July 1993 US helicopter attack on a meeting of Habar Gidir clan leaders, who were meeting to discuss a peace initiative put forward by the leader of the UN Mission in Mogadishu, retired US Admiral Jonathan Howe. Bowden suggests that most of the clan elders were eager to arrange peace and rein in the subversive activities of their clan leader Aidid. Still, after this attack on a peaceful meeting, the clan was resolved to fight the Americans and the UN, leading to the Battle of Mogadishu on 3–4 October 1993.

Boutros-Ghali ran unopposed for the customary second term in 1996, despite efforts by the United States to unseat him. US ambassador Madeleine Albright asked Boutros-Ghali to resign and offered to establish a foundation for him to run, an offer that other Western diplomats called "ludicrous".American diplomatic pressure also had no effect, as other members of the Security Council remained unwavering in their support for Boutros-Ghali. He won 14 of the 15 votes in the Security Council, but the sole opposing vote was a US veto.After four deadlocked meetings of the Security Council, France offered a compromise in which Boutros-Ghali would be appointed to a short term of two years, but the United States rejected the French offer. Finally, Boutros-Ghali suspended his candidacy, becoming the second Secretary-General ever to be denied re-election by a veto, with Kurt Waldheim being the first.

Boutros-Ghali's wife, Leia Maria Nadler, was raised in an Egyptian Jewish family in Alexandria and converted to Catholicism as a young woman.

Boutros-Ghali died aged 93 in a Cairo hospital after being admitted for a broken pelvis or leg on 16 February 2016.A military funeral was held for him with prayers led by Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria. He is buried at Petrine Church in Abbassia, Cairo


* The World Affairs Council Christian A. Herter memorial award, Boston (March 1993)

* The Arthur A. Houghton Jr. Star Crystal Award for Excellence de l'Institut afro- américain, New York (November 1993)

* Member of the Académie des Sciences Morales et Politiques

* Honorary membership of the Order of Canada

* Honorary membership of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, Moscow (April 1994)

* Honorary foreign membership of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow (April 1994)

* Honorary foreign membership of the Academy of Sciences of Belarus, Minsk (April 1994)

* Fellow of Berkeley College, Yale University (March 1995)

* The recipient of the Onassis Award for International Understanding and Social Achievement (July 1995)


Reference:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boutros_Boutros-Ghali

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Date of Birth: 14th November, 1922

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