ISLAMABAD: The government on Friday formally announced that Foreign Secretary Jalil Abbas Jilani will take up the diplomatic hot seat in Washington, to become Pakistan’s ambassador to the US.
This will be Jilani’s second assignment in the US, having previously served there during the Clinton administration from 1995 to 1999.
While the decision had been taken in principle last month, it took the government nearly four weeks to make a formal announcement.
Ambassador Jilani joined the Foreign Service of Pakistan in 1979. He was appointed as Foreign Secretary in March 2012.
He is a career diplomat and prior to his current appointment, he has served as Ambassador of Pakistan to Belgium, Luxembourg and the European Union. He used to interact with the NATO HQ based in Brussels on regular basis.
Ambassador Jilani, born on February 2, 1955, holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Law and M.Sc. in Defence and Strategic Studies.
In his professional life, he has specialised in South Asian affairs and remained Director India (1992-1995), Deputy High Commissioner/Acting High Commissioner to New Delhi (1999-2003) and Director General South Asia and SAARC (2003-2007). In 2005 he also served as the government’s spokesperson on Foreign Affairs.
From 1990 to 1992, Ambassador Jilani also served as a deputy secretary in the Prime Minister’s Secretariat.
His other overseas assignments include: Jeddah (1983-1985), London (1985-1988), Washington (1995-1999) and High Commissioner to Canberra, Australia (2007-2009).
Jilani will join his new assignment in December.