Stavros Lambrinidis

Stavros Lambrinidis
Σταύρος Λαμπρινίδης
European Union Special Representative for Human Rights
Assumed office
25 July 2012
Preceded by Position established
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
17 June 2011  11 November 2011
Prime Minister George Papandreou
Preceded by Dimitrios Droutsas
Succeeded by Stavros Dimas
Personal details
Born (1962-02-06) 6 February 1962
Athens, Greece
Political party Panhellenic Socialist Movement
Spouse(s) Phoebe Capuanou
Alma mater University of Chicago
Amherst College
Yale University
Religion Greek Orthodoxy
Website Official website

Stavros Lambrinidis (Greek: Σταύρος Λαμπρινίδης; born 6 February 1962) is the European Union's Special Representative for Human Rights.

He previously held the positions of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Greece; Vice President of the European Parliament; the Director General of the International Olympic Truce Center; Ambassador at Large of the Hellenic Republic; Secretary General of the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs; attorney at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering in Washington, D.C.; and Managing Editor of the Yale Journal of International Law at Yale University Law School.

Yale University

After graduating from the Athens College, E.US.R. Stavros Lambrinidis was admitted in Amherst College in 1980 where he received his B.A. degree in economics and political science with the distinctions of Magna Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa and a scholarship for the rest of his studies (he spent a year in the University of Chicago as well). He completed his education in 1988, with a J.D. degree from Yale Law School.

At Yale University he worked as a Teaching Assistant in the School of Business Administration, as well as the Managing Editor of The Yale Journal of International Law.[1]

Early career

Foreign Minister's Stavros Lambrinidis interview on BBC News in October 2011

He trained in International Trade, Transactions and Arbitration,[2] as a colleague of Lloyd Cutler[3] (founder of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering in Washington, D.C. and law advisor of the White House during Jimmy Carter's and Bill Clinton's Presidencies). He also served as president of the Committee for Human Rights in the Bar Association of Washington, D.C..

His career in Greece, started in 1994 as a special advisor to former Prime Minister and President of the Socialist International George A. Papandreou and continued as the chief-of-staff of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs during Theodoros Pangalos's post in the Ministry in 1996. Between 1996 and 1999 he was Secretary General of the Greek Foreign Affairs Ministry responsible for Diaspora Greeks. He subsequently became the Ambassador at Large of the Hellenic Republic and a few years later the Director General of the International Olympic Truce Center (International Olympic Committee organization).

During this period, he was a visiting Professor in the International Olympic Academy in Athens as well as a lecturer in the Diplomatic and Police Academies of Greece. He was also a guest speaker in the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland in the years 2003 and 2004.[4]

European Parliament

E.U.S.R. Stavros Lambrinidis started his career in the European Parliament on 20 July 2004,[5] as a Member of the European Parliament for the PA.SO.K.. A few months later he was elected as the Vice President of the Party of European Socialists and in April 2005, as the Member of the European Parliament in charge of the Parliamentary group of the PA.SO.K..

During this term, he served as a Vice President of the Parliament's Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE),[6] as a Member of the Delegation of Relations with the United States,[7] as well as a Substitute-Member of the Delegation of Relations with Iran and the Committee of the Constitutional Affairs.

In July 2009, he was elected as a Vice President of the European Parliament,[8] while in November 2010, he was a speaker of the European Data Protection and Privacy Conference.[9]

As a popular politician, with a large experience in the diplomatic field, international trade, foreign relations and a political instinct, E.U.S.R. Stavros Lambrinidis was reckoned as one of the most favourable candidates for the Presidency of the European Parliament.

Minister for Foreign Affairs

Foreign Minister of Greece, Stavros Lambrinidis, with the Secretary General of the League of Arab States Nabil Elaraby during his visit in Cairo in October 2011
Greek Foreign Minister Lambrinidis with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman during the 66th General Assembly UN

Following a cabinet reshuffle that took place on 17 June 2011 in Athens, Greece, Prime Minister George A. Papandreou announced Stavros Lambrinidis as the new Minister for Foreign Affairs of Greece.

A month after the assignment of his new post, he signed a Cultural Memorandum of Understanding with the U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, on import restrictions for archaeological finds between the U.S. and Greece, in order to combat the illegal trade of Greek antiquities that have frequently turned up in foreign museums.[10]

As a former Ambassador at Large and Foreign Affairs Minister of the Hellenic Republic, since July 2011 visited numerous European countries,[11] to explain thoroughly the effectiveness of the reforms taking place in Greece and the investment opportunities in the country, in order to establish a vote of confidence for the financial assistance which is given by the E.U. member countries,[12] as well to attract new foreign investors. During his interviews, he also made a number of proposals about the establishment of new international instruments, such as the financial transactions tax, and new legislation and organizations, such as the creation of a fiscal model, that would make the E.U. more united, in order to be able to prevent, or tackle a lot more effectively a financial crisis that could be created again in the future.[13]

In September 2011, he represented Greece on the 66th General Assembly of the United Nations,[14] while a few days later he was the keynote speaker in the World Leadership Forum,[15] which is annually organized by the Foreign Policy Association.

E.U.S.R. Stavros Lambrinidis was succeeded by M.P. Stavros Dimas in November 2011, after an agreement between the parties that participated in the Coalition Government.

Special Representative

Meeting of Stavros Lambrinidis with the U.S. Ambassador Daniel Bennett Smith in October 2011 in Athens

A long-standing request[16] for a representative that would be in charge of enhancing the effectiveness and visibility of E.U.'s Human Rights policy, based on the Strategic Framework and Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy (officially adopted on 25 June 2012),[17] led to the creation of the post of the Special Representative of the European Union for Human Rights . The post which is providing a strong, independent, flexible and sufficiently broad mandate, is aiming to cover fields such as the strengthening of Democracy, International Justice, Humanitarian Law and the abolition of the death penalty .

On 25 July 2012, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Baroness Ashton of Upholland, appointed him as the first European Union's Special Representative for Human Rights, with a two years mandate.

Stavros Lambrinidis as Foreign Minister of Greece with Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger in July 2011

Awards and distinctions


See also


Political offices
Preceded by
Dimitrios Droutsas
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Stavros Dimas
Diplomatic posts
New office European Union Special Representative for Human Rights
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