Secretary General for Foreign Affairs, Linhart on the appointment of the new EU Agency for Fundamental Rights director

Vienna, 25 September 2015 - “With Michael O’Flaherty once again a renowned expert for human rights heads the European efforts on the protection and promotion of fundamental rights within the EU. I am convinced, that he will continue the agency’s valuable work in the years to come”, the Secretary General for Foreign Affairs, Michael Linhart said on the appointment of Michael O’Flaherty as new director of the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights, which is based in Vienna.

O’Flaherty had been director of the widely respected Irish centre for human rights and professor at the National University of Ireland in Galway. “Due to his expertise, O’Flaherty will be a great asset to the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights in the work on solutions for present and future challenges”, said the Secretary General. “Austria will do as much as possible to support him in this endeavour.”

The EU Agency for Fundamental Rights was founded in March 2007 as successor of the European Union Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia, which had its seat in Vienna since 2000. It is the central hub for all EU institutions on human rights issues. Linhart: “The Agency for Fundamental Rights has evolved into a centre of competence for the protection of human rights and thus, especially in the light of recent developments, contributes substantially to the promotion of fundamental rights within the EU.”