Danilo Türk is former President of Slovenia. He was elected by popular vote as the third President of Slovenia for the term 2007-2012.
Prior to his term as President, Danilo Türk was professor of international law, an expert on human rights, a diplomat and United Nations’ Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs. He served on the UN Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities (1984-1992) and, in that framework, prepared several reports on the realization of economic, social and cultural rights as well as on the freedom of opinion and expression. In addition, he worked as member of the UN Working Group on the Right to Development and drafted the 1986 UN Declaration on the subject. In 1988 he co-founded an independent Human Rights Council in Slovenia and was the Council’s Vice-Chairman. In that capacity, he drafted the human rights provisions in the Constitution of the Republic of Slovenia (1991). Later he also served as member of the UN Human Rights Committee (1995-96).
Following the independence of Slovenia, Danilo Türk became his country’s first Permanent Representative to the UN in New York. In 1997 he led his country’s campaign for election to the non- permanent seat at the UN Security Council and, following election, represented Slovenia on that principal body of the UN (1998-2000). After the successful conclusion of his term, he was invited by the then UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to join his team as Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs. He served in that capacity from 2000 to 2005 and, among other tasks, assisted in the early years of work of the Club de Madrid. After his return to Slovenia in 2005 he taught international law at the Faculty of Law, University in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and developed extensive contacts with colleagues around the world. In 2007 he became a candidate for the post of the President of the Republic of Slovenia. He won the election – without being a member of any political party, but nominated by a list of citizens, supported by several political parties.
Following the conclusion of his term as President at the end of 2012, Danilo Türk devoted his time to humanitarian work, teaching and international cooperation. He is the founder of the Foundation “Let the Dream” (established in 2010) assisting children – victims of violence. He is Emeritus Professor of International Law of the University in Ljubljana. He serves as chairman or member of a number of international advisory boards and has chaired the Global High-Level panel on Water and Peace. Much of his recent work has been devoted to projects of the Club de Madrid.