NEW PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF SRI LANKA PRESENTS CREDENTIALS19980427
John Henricus de Saram, the new Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, presented his credentials today to Secretary-General Kofi Annan.
Mr. de Saram, a former member of the International Law Commission (1992-1996) and former Director at the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs (1986-1989), has served as legal consultant of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to Indian Ocean Marine Affairs Cooperation meetings from 1989 to 1991. From 1991 to 1996, he represented Sri Lanka at the General Assembly's Sixth Committee (Legal).
His assignments as member of the International Law Commission included serving as the General Rapporteur of the Commission in 1993; and representing the Commission at the Inter-American Juridical Committee of the Organization of American States (OAS) in Rio de Janeiro in 1995. He was also a member of a panel of the International Law Association, in New York, on the codification and progressive development of international law under the auspices of the United Nations in 1995. In 1997, he was a United Nations recommended legal consultant to Hangzhou International Centre on Small Hydro Power, in China.
Mr. de Saram began his legal career in 1952 as a university law lecturer. He later served, from 1952 to 1958, as Private Secretary and Aide- de-Camp to his country's Chief Justice, Advocate of the Supreme Court, civil and criminal lawyer, and Barrister (Inner Temple) in the United Kingdom.
He began his United Nations career as an Assistant and Associate Legal Officer in the General Legal Division of the Office of Legal Affairs (1958- 1962). He then worked as a Legal Officer (1962-1968); Senior Legal Officer (1968-1977); and Deputy-Director of the General Legal Division (1977-1984), and of the Codification Division (1984-1986).
Born in Sri Lanka on 27 June 1929, Mr. de Saram received his law degrees from his country's national university and Yale University Law School, United States, as a Smith-Mundt scholar.
Mr. de Saram is married.
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