In December 1996, Mr. Kovanda was appointed as his country's Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs concurrently with his appointment at the United Nations.
During 1994-1995, he was the Czech Republic's representative on the Security Council, serving as President in January 1994 and April 1995. During that time, he also chaired the Council's sanctions committee established pursuant to resolution 748 (1992) concerning Libya, and participated in two fact-finding missions to Mozambique, Burundi and Rwanda.
Prior to his current appointment at the United Nations, Mr. Kovanda headed the Euroatlantic Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, which deals with bilateral relations with countries of Europe and North America. That appointment followed the break-up of Czechoslovakia at the end of 1992 and the subsequent creation of the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic.
Mr. Kovanda first joined Czechoslovakia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs in April 1991, and was in charge of its Administrative Department from May 1991 to December 1992.
Before that appointment, Mr. Kovanda lived outside Czechoslovakia for 20 years, from 1970 to 1990. From 1980 to 1990, he worked as a manager with international responsibilities in the United States private sector, where he was also active as a free-lance journalist and translator. From 1977 to 1979, Mr. Kovanda worked in China as a consultant to Radio Beijing.
* This biographical note supersedes Press Release BIO/2790 of 7 July 1993.
- 2 - Press Release BIO/3057 ECOSOC/5693 23 January 1997
Before working in Beijing, Mr. Kovanda studied political science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1970 to 1975, earning a doctoral degree in that field in 1975. He later taught in several southern California colleges. Mr. Kovanda also received a masters degree in business administration from Pepperdine University (California) in 1985. As an undergraduate, he earned a degree in agriculture from the Prague School of Agriculture in 1969.
Born on 5 October 1944 in Gilsland, United Kingdom, Mr. Kovanda speaks Czech, English, Spanish, French, Russian and German. He is married and has two children.
* *** *