Andrew Green (diplomat)

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Sir Andrew Green, KCMG (born 6 August 1941) is a British former diplomat and the founding chairman of the organization MigrationWatch UK, an organisation concerned with what they view as unacceptably high levels of immigration to the United Kingdom.

Background and education[edit]

Green[1] was educated at Haileybury and Imperial Service College before going up to Magdalene, Cambridge, where he read Natural Sciences and Economics and graduated with the degree of MA.[2]

He served his National Service as an officer in the Royal Green Jackets, before joining HM Diplomatic Service, where he learnt to speak Arabic whilst at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's Middle East Centre for Arab Studies in Lebanon.[3]

Diplomatic career[edit]

Green joined the British Diplomatic Service in 1965, where he worked for 35 years, spending the majority of his career in the Arab world, where he served in six posts. The remainder of his service was divided between London, Paris, and Washington DC. He was HM Ambassador to Syria (1991–94) and then Director for the Middle East at the Foreign Office, before serving as Ambassador to Saudi Arabia for four and a half years. Green retired in June 2000.

Green was appointed Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) in the 1991 Birthday Honours,[4] and promoted as Knight Commander (KCMG) in the 1998 Birthday Honours.[5]

Other work[edit]

Since retiring, Green has devoted his time to voluntary work. He is a former Chairman of Medical Aid for Palestinians (a British charity seeking to improve health care for Palestinians both in Palestine and in the diaspora in refugee camps), a member of the Advisory Board of the Sudan, and on the board of Christian Solidarity Worldwide (a human rights organisation which speaks for Christians and others around the world who are suffering persecution for their religious beliefs).

MigrationWatch UK[edit]

Green is regularly interviewed on British television and radio as a voice opposed to high levels of immigration, as Founding Chairman of MigrationWatch UK. Green states that his awareness of the significance of issue of immigration when he was the Foreign Secretary's principal adviser on the Middle East in the mid-1990s. At that time he spent two years working, on the Prime Minister's instructions, to remove Islamic extremist Mohammad al-Massari from Britain but was frustrated by the British courts despite having UK Government support.[6] In December 2001, he co-founded Migration Watch UK with David Coleman, Professor of Demography at Oxford University.

An article by Dean Godson of the centre-right think tank[7] Policy Exchange published in The Times in June 2006 states:

The dramatic change in the terms of the immigration debate over recent months is largely down to the determination and courage of a single individual – Sir Andrew Green, the founder and chairman of MigrationWatch UK. Almost single-handedly, he has rescued the national discourse from the twin inanities of saloon-bar bigotry on the Right and politically correct McCarthyism on the Left.[3]

William Morris, who works with Andrew Green at the Next Century Foundation, has stated:

He has been and always will be one of the great ambassadors, an awesome figure on the Arab stage. The first time we heard him speak for MigrationWatch, soon after his retirement, it was quite a shock. Although I have great respect for him, I have great concern about the consequences of what he is saying.[8]

Similarly, Chris Doyle, head of the Council for Arab-British Understanding, has stated that Green has had "many fans in the Arab world and a distinguished career in the Middle East", and that: "He believes in a just peace for Palestinians but obviously many Palestinians and Arabs will disagree with the views that MigrationWatch expresses".[8]


On 21 October 2014, it was announced that he was to be created a Life Peer on the House of Lords crossbenches, upon David Cameron's recommendation to HM The Queen.[9]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Companies House". Companies House. Retrieved 2012-04-27. 
  2. ^ "Sir Andrew Green". MigrationWatch UK. Retrieved 28 May 2010. 
  3. ^ a b Godson, Dean (10 June 2006). "How the immigration barrier rose". The Times (London). Retrieved 28 May 2010. 
  4. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 52563. p. 4. 15 June 1991.
  5. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 55155. p. 3. 15 June 1998.
  6. ^ Rayner, Jay (7 January 2007). "Master of the numbers game". The Observer. Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  7. ^ "The right's 100 most influential: 50-26". Daily Telegraph (London). 2 October 2007. Retrieved 6 January 2010. 
  8. ^ a b MacAskill, Ewen (4 November 2005). "Profile: Sir Andrew Green". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 December 2009. 
  9. ^ "Press Notice: Peerages conferred". Prime Minister's Office. 21 October 2014. Retrieved 22 October 2014. 

External links[edit]