On October 16, Foreign Policy at Brookings hosted United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson for a Statesman’s Forum focusing on the United Nations’ current agenda and upcoming work. Among the key issues addressed by Ambassador Eliasson are the conflict in Syria, Iran's diplomatic openings, developments in Afghanistan and the UN and its post-2015 development strategy. Brookings Acting Vice President and Director of Foreign Policy Ted Piccone moderated the discussion, and Foreign Policy at Brookings Distinguished Fellow Thomas Pickering offered remarks.
Ambassador Eliasson was appointed UN deputy secretary-general in 2012. From 2007-2008, he served as the special envoy of the UN secretary-general for Darfur. Prior to joining the UN, he was Sweden’s ambassador to the United States from 2000 to 2005. In early 2006, Ambassador Eliasson was appointed foreign minister of Sweden and served in that capacity until elections were held later that year. He was Sweden’s ambassador to the United Nations from 1988 to 1992, Ambassador Eliasson has also served as the secretary-general’s personal representative for Iran/Iraq and was the first UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs.