20 March 2006

Biographical Note

Secretary-General Appoints Nobuaki Tanaka of Japan Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs

NEW YORK, 17 March (UN Headquarters) -- United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan announced today the appointment of Nobuaki Tanaka of Japan as the new Under-Secretary-General for Disarmament Affairs, succeeding Nobuyasu Abe, effective 6 April 2006.  Mr. Tanaka has most recently been serving as Ambassador of Japan to Pakistan.

Mr. Tanaka, who joined the Japanese Foreign Service in 1970, is a seasoned diplomat with a variety of experience, not only dealing with bilateral political and economic issues, but also working within the United Nations system in the past.  He served as Assistant Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) (1994-1997) in charge of Management and Administration, as well as an Information Officer in the United Nations Department of Public Information (1980-1983), thus acquiring extensive experience in management and the working of the United Nations system.

He also has a broad academic background.  He acquired a Master of Arts from King's College, Cambridge University, United Kingdom, as well as a Law Degree from Tokyo University.  He served as a Senior Research Fellow at the International Institute of Peace Studies, Japan, working closely with former Prime Minister Nakasone for the Trilateral Commission.  He was a professor at Doshisha Women's College in Japan teaching security issues, including Disarmament and Non-Proliferation (2002-2004), and a lecturer at Waseda University (1986-1991).

In his professional career in the Foreign Ministry of Japan, particularly during his tenure as Deputy Director-General in the Policy and North American Bureau, he dealt with key security issues concerning Japan, including the Korean peninsula leading into the six-party talks and the banning of anti-personnel landmines.  Earlier in his career, he was in charge of non-governmental organizations and public relations at the time of the Second Special Session of the General Assembly on Disarmament.  When he was Director-General of the Research Bureau of the House of Councillors, he was instrumental in the passage of landmark legislation in Japan concerning the Emergency Situation of Attack against Japan and other important security laws and regulations.

During his assignment in Pakistan, he has endeavoured to strengthen bilateral cooperation particularly in regard to export control and non-proliferation of sensitive technology and goods.

Mr. Tanaka was born in Chiba, Japan, on 26 August 1946.  He is married with one son.

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