Dr. Ahmed Shaheed graduated from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, with a Bachelor’s degree in International Politics and Strategic Studies in 1989, and obtained his PhD in 1995 from the University of Queensland, Brisbane, in the field of International Relations. He is an avid writer and academic, and has presented numerous papers at various international conferences covering topics as diverse as economic development, terrorism, diplomacy, and democracy. Dr. Shaheed has also been a visiting professor of political science at the City University of New York – Brooklyn College since March 2012 and a visiting professor of human rights practice at the University of Essex since October 2012.
Dr. Ahmed Shaheed is an internationally recognized expert on foreign policy, international diplomacy, democratization, and human rights reform, especially in Muslim States. He has twice held the Office of Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Maldives, a position he used to promote human rights standards and norms.
He became a Member of the United Nations Human Rights Council with a record number of votes in 2010.
The Human Rights Council appointed Dr. Ahmed Shaheed to the office of Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran in June 2011, and he began his mandate on 1 August. Dr. Shaheed is the fourth special rapporteur to Iran, after Andres Aguilar (1984-1986), Reynaldo Galindo Pohl (1984-1986), and Maurice Copithorne (1995-2002).