Change of UK Ambassador to Iraq

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Mr Simon Paul Collis has been appointed Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq.
He will succeed Mr Michael Aron who will be transferring to another Diplomatic Service appointment. Mr Collis will take up his appointment at the end of June 2012.
Mr Collis joined the FCO in 1978 and after studying Arabic has served mainly in the Middle East. His most recent postings have been as Her Majesty’s Consul General in Dubai and in Basra, and Her Majesty’s Ambassador in Doha and in Damascus. He left Syria on the withdrawal of remaining staff in February 2012, and was declared persona non grata by the Syrian regime in June 2012.
On his appointment as Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq, Mr Collis has said “I am honoured to be appointed Ambassador to Iraq and look forward to returning there. I will do my best to work with the Government and people of Iraq to strengthen relations between our countries.
At a time of change in the region and in the wider world there are many challenges and opportunities across political, economic, security and cultural fields where both countries can benefit from working more closely together in pursuit of our shared interests and objectives.
I believe that success in these endeavours must be rooted in a sound appreciation of our historical links while remaining firmly focused on building the future. I am very happy to have been afforded this opportunity to contribute to that exciting and valuable work.”
Curriculum vitae

Full name:
Simon Paul Collis

Married to:
Huda Mujarkech

Five adult children

October 2007 – Present
Her Majesty’s Ambassador, Damascus

2005 – 2007
Her Majesty’s Ambassador, Doha

2004 – 2005
Basra, Consul General

2000 – 2004
Dubai, Consul General

1999 – 2000
Secondment to BP

1996 – 1999
Amman, Deputy Head of Mission

1994 – 1996
FCO, Deputy Head, Near East & North Africa Dept

1991 – 1994
New Delhi, First Secretary

1990 – 1991
FCO, Gulf War Emergency Unit

1988 – 1990
Tunis, Deputy Head of Mission

1987 – 1988
FCO, Head of India Section, South Asia Department

UKMis New York, Temporary Duty

1984 – 1986
FCO, Middle East Spokesman, News Department

1981 – 1984
Bahrain, Second Secretary

1980 – 1981
Full Time Arabic Language Training

1978 – 1979
FCO, Desk Officer, Southern European Department

(Source: FCO)