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Kees van Rij

Kees van Rij became Chair of the Supervisory Board of the Netherland Helsinki Committee in February 2024.

He brings to the organisation close to 40 years of experience in the Dutch diplomatic service, having recently served as ambassador in Spain, Greece, Brazil and Turkey. Prior to these postings, van Rij was Director of European Integration at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, Head of Division at the Policy Unit and Advisor to the High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy at the European Union. In the mid-1990s, he served as Private Secretary to Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness Prince Claus of the Netherlands.

Alongside his role as Chairperson of the Supervisory Board at the NHC, van Rij is currently also a member of the Commission on European Integration at the Dutch Advisory Council on International Affairs (AIV); an independent body which advises the Dutch government and parliament on foreign policy, as well as Strategic advisor international affairs at The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies.

Van Rij holds a Master’s degree in History from the University of Amsterdam.