Ben Bot

Ben Bot

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Ben Bot

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Bernard Rudolf "Ben" Bot (born November 21, 1937) is a Dutch politician and diplomat of the Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA). He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from December 3, 2003 until February 22, 2007 in the Cabinets Balkenende II and III.

A career diplomat, he succeed then Minister of Foreign Affairs Jaap de Hoop Scheffer when he became Secretary General of NATO in 2003.


Early life

Bot was born in Batavia, Dutch East Indies (now Jakarta, Indonesia). He studied law at and obtained his PhD. from Leiden University in Leiden, attended the Hague Academy of International Law and went to Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts in the United States.


He served in the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 1963 to 2002, including postings at the Permanent Representation of The Netherlands to the European Community from 1964 to 1970, the Netherlands embassy in Buenos Aires to 1973, and at the embassy in former East-Berlin in the DDR. In the period 1976-1982 he worked in The Netherlands for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague, after which he was Deputy Permanent Representative of the Netherlands to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) in Brussels.

From 1986-1989, Bot was Ambassador of the Netherlands to Turkey. He served as Secretary-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague until 1992, when he was appointed as Permanent Representative of the Netherlands to the European Union...
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