New NATO Senior Civilian Representative in Afghanistan assumes duties

  • 14 Apr. 2011 -
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  • Press Release (2010) 046
  • Issued on 14 Apr. 2011
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  • Last updated: 14 Apr. 2011 12:08

The NATO Secretary General, Mr. Anders Fogh Rasmussen, welcomed the new NATO Senior Civilian Representative in Afghanistan, Ambassador Simon Gass, at the meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers in Berlin, Germany, on 14 April 2011.

The Senior Civilian Representative is responsible for carrying forward the political-military aspects of the Alliance’s assistance to the Afghan Government. He will work closely with the Afghan Government, ISAF, the United Nations and other key stakeholders in Afghanistan.

"I look forward to working with the Afghan Government and with the international community to help ensure that the great people of Afghanistan can live in independence, peace and prosperity. Our shared strategy is to ensure full Afghan ownership of all the functions of government and throughout the territory of Afghanistan. That means that Afghan and ISAF forces will continue their campaign to defeat the insurgents who seek to undermine the elected and sovereign Afghan Government. But it also means building a strong partnership between Afghanistan and NATO which underpins the long-term nature of NATO's commitment," emphasised Ambassador Gass.
Ambassador Gass officially assumes his duties at the Foreign Ministers’ meeting in Berlin. He succeeds Ambassador Mark Sedwill who served as NATO’s fifth Senior Civilian Representative in Afghanistan from January 2010 to April 2011. Mr. Rasmussen thanked Ambassador Sedwill for his outstanding work in strengthening the political component of NATO’s engagement in Afghanistan, and wished him success in his new post in the UK Foreign and Commonweath Office. Ambassador Sedwill will serve as Director General (Afghanistan and Pakistan) and UK Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Still photos will also be made available via NATO’s website (
For further information, please contact the NATO Press and Media Service in Brussels.  Tel. +32 2 707 50 41; Fax: +32 27 07 13 99.