Dr. Ahmed Shaheed, Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief
Dr. Ahmed Shaheed assumed his mandate as Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief on 1 November 2016.
Dr. Shaheed is Deputy Director of the Essex Human Rights Centre. He was the first Special Rapporteur of the Human Rights Council on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran since the termination of the previous Commission on Human Rights mandate in 2002.
A career diplomat, he has twice held the office of Minister of Foreign Affairs of Maldives. He led Maldives' efforts to embrace international human rights standards between 2003 and 2011.
In 2015, Dr. Shaheed won the UN Foundation Leo Nevas Human Rights (Global Leadership) Award. In 2010, he was granted a Presidential Medal of Gratitude by Albania and in 2009, he was recognized as the Muslim Democrat of the Year by the Centre for the Study of Islam and Democracy.