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Silvio Gonzato

Silvio Gonzato is Director for Human Rights and Democracy at the European External Action Service (EEAS), the foreign ministry and diplomatic corps for the European Union. In this role, he oversees the EEAS's global efforts to promote civil, political, economic, social, and cultural rights.

A European Parliament official since 1988, Mr. Gonzato previously served as Head of the Secretariat of the European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs. He has spent most of his career (thirteen years) working in different Committee Secretariats, covering both internal and external policies.

Within the European Parliament Mr. Gonzato acquired hands-on parliamentary experience in a variety of fields. He assisted MEPs in the legislative process (including the negotiations on the new EU external financial instruments in 2004-2006 and negotiations on the establishment of the European External Action Service). He worked on the development of new oversight methods (e.g., Working Group on the European Social Fund, Working Groups on the External Financial Assistance Instruments, Monitoring Group on the Southern Mediterranean).

Mr. Gonzato also carried special responsibilities for countries of the Western Balkans and for the EU enlargement strategy. His responsibilities involved advising the Chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs regarding the organization of the activities of the Committee, contacts with other EU institutions, relations with the European External Action Service, and contacts with diplomatic missions in Brussels.