Former U.N. assistant secretary general to speak at Bates

Giandomenico Picco, the former U.N. assistant secretary general who gained the release of journalist Terry Anderson and 10 other Western hostages held at Shiite strongholds in Lebanon, will discuss Iraq in the 21st Century at at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 25  in the Edmund S. Muskie Archives, 70 Campus Ave. The public is invited to attend free of charge.

Picco, who received the Order of St. Michael and St. George from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the President’s Special Award for Exceptional Service from President George Bush, is best known for repeatedly placing himself in the hands of Beirut’s political kidnappers to complete deals freeing the hostages and 91 other political prisoners. He also was instrumental in ending hostilities between Iran and Iraq in the 1980s and worked to negotiate the Geneva Accords on Afghanistan in 1988 that led to the withdrawal of Soviet troops.

The author of Talking with Terror, Picco is chairman of the Ambassador’s Council of the U.N.’s Association/USA and sits on the boards of the European-American Chamber of Commerce and the International Peace Academy. He also is chairman and chief executive officer of GDP Associates Inc., a firm that develops partnerships and affiliations for multilateral global trade and investment.

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