His Excellency Abdul Ghafoor Mohamed was appointed to the post of Foreign Secretary by His Excellency President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih on 22 November 2018.
An accomplished diplomat, Ghafoor has served the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Maldives, both at headquarters and in a number of foreign postings. Starting his career as a Program Officer in 1983, he has held the post of Assistant Undersecretary, Assistant Director, Political Affairs and Deputy Director and Director, Foreign Relations, at the Ministry. In 1997, Ghafoor was deputed to serve in the Secretariat of South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) as Director from Maldives. Following his 3-year tenure at the SAARC Secretariat, Ghafoor was appointed Director General at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2000, and was later promoted to the rank of Assistant Executive Director in 2005 and then to Executive Director in 2007.
During his long and distinguished career in the Maldives foreign service, Ghafoor also served as Counsellor and then Deputy High Commissioner of Maldives to Sri Lanka and later as Deputy High Commissioner of Maldives to Malaysia. He was appointed as the Permanent Representative of the Maldives to the United Nations Offices in Geneva in 2008 by then President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom, concurrently serving as the Permanent Representative of Maldives to the World Trade Organisation. Following the change of Government in 2008, the newly elected President Mohamed Nasheed appointed Ghafoor as the Permanent Representative of Maldives to the United Nations in 2009, concurrently accredited as the Ambassador to the United States of America and Non-Resident High Commissioner to Canada. After the unprecedented and controversial resignation of President Nasheed in 2012, Ghafoor stepped down from his post.
From 2013 till 2014, Ghafoor served as a Consultant at the Foreign Relations Department of the People’s Majlis (Parliament), aiding the legislature in fostering international cooperation and engagement. During the period 2014-2017, Ghafoor served as Director, Special Projects at ADK Enterprises Pvt Ltd, and as the Head of External Relations at the newly established Tree Top Hospital in Hulhumale, gaining experience in the private sector. An individual with a keenness for academia, Ghafoor also lectured at the Maldives National University from 2016 to 2018 in the subjects of Political Science and International Relations.
Ghafoor graduated from the University of Tasmania, Australia, in 1984 with a B.A(Hons.) in Political Science, and was awarded an M.A in International Relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, USA in 1988.
Born on 20 November 1959, Ghafoor is married to Mariyam Khalida. They have a son and a daughter.
To mark the Freedom Online Coalition’s (FOC) 10th anniversary, Finland, as the Chair, is organising a virtual FOC 10th Anniversary Ministerial Meeting on 3 December 2021, hosted by Pekka Haavisto, the Finnish Minister for Foreign Affairs. The Ministerial, the culmination of Finland’s FOC Chairship, is an important opportunity to raise the visibility of the Coalition and to set the FOC's goals and vision for the 2020s.