Koïchiro Matsuura (1937-)

© UNESCO / Michel Ravassard
Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General (1999-2009)

Koïchiro Matsuura of Japan was appointed by the Organization's General Conference on November 12 1999 to serve a six-year term as Director-General of UNESCO. Mr Matsuura, born in Tokyo in 1937, served as Ambassador of Japan to France from 1994 to 1999. He was educated at the Law Faculty of the University of Tokyo and at the Faculty of Economics of Haverford College (Pennsylvania, U.S.A.) and began his diplomatic career in 1959.

Posts held by Mr Matsuura include those of Director-General of the Economic Co-operation Bureau of Japan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1988); Director-General of the North American Affairs Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1990); Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs. He also served as the Chairperson of UNESCO's World Heritage Committee for one year, until November 1999.

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