Hennadiy Udovenko, who was elected President of the fifty-second session of the General Assembly, has been the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine since September 1994. Prior to being appointed to that post, Mr. Udovenko was Ukraine's Ambassador to Poland, from 1992 to 1994. He also holds the diplomatic rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.
A career diplomat, Mr. Udovenko has worked for many years in the service of his country and for the United Nations, both in New York and in Geneva. From 1980 to 1985, he was Ukraine's Deputy Foreign Minister. From 1985 to 1992, as the Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the United Nations, Mr. Udovenko served in various capacities on several intergovernmental bodies within the United Nations. During July 1985, he served as the President of the Security Council. In the General Assembly, he held the posts of vice-President of the forty-sixth session (1991); Chairman of the then called Special Political Committee at the forty-fourth session (1989) and of the same Committee at the Assembly's eighteenth special session (1990); Chairman of the Second Committee (Economic and Financial) at the forty-second session (1987) and of the same Committee at the Assembly's fifteenth special session (1988). From 1989 to 1991, Mr. Udovenko was Vice-President of the Economic and Social Council.
During his tenure as Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the United Nations, Mr. Udovenko was also the Vice-Chairman, of the United Nations Special Committee against Apartheid. In that capacity, his contribution to the eradication of apartheid was internationally recognized. On many occasions, he headed or was a member of the Committee's delegation to various seminars, symposiums and other international forums. Mr. Udovenko also participated in many meetings held within the framework of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
As a member of Ukraine's delegation, Mr. Udovenko participated in many General Assembly sessions from 1972 to 1977 and from 1985 to 1991. He also attended many special sessions, leading his country's delegation to the forty-ninth (1994), fiftieth (1995) and fifty-first (1996) sessions of the General Assembly.Mr. Udovenko has been actively involved in several other organs and bodies -- both within and outside the United Nations system -- dealing with political, economic and financial issues, as well as development, the environment and human rights. He has also served as his Government's representative to the Governing Body of the International Labour Organization.
From 1965 to 1971, Mr. Udovenko served as Administrative Officer, Technical Assistance Recruitment Services, at the United Nations Office at Geneva. From 1977 to 1980, he worked as Director of the Interpretation and Meetings Division, Department of Conference Services, United Nations, New York.
Mr. Udovenko joined his country's ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1959 as First Secretary. From 1959 to 1965, he occupied various positions, including that of Director of the Department of International Economic organizations and also of the Department of Personnel.
Mr. Udovenko is the author of numerous articles and publications on international issues and on the foreign policy of Ukraine. He was a member of the editorial board of a book entitled Ukraine in International organizations.
Mr. Udovenko graduated from Taras Shevchenko Kyiv University in 1954 with a degree in international relations. He undertook postgraduate studies at the Ukrainian Scientific and Research Institute of Economics of Agriculture.
In 1995, he was awarded the Honorary Award of the President of Ukraine in recognition of his personal contribution to the development of Ukraine's foreign policy. Mr. Udovenko speaks English, Russian, Polish and some French.
Born in 1931 in the town of Kryvy Ril:, Ukraine, Mr. Udovenko is married and has a daughter.