Fereydoon Hoveyda

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Fereydoon Hoveyda
فریدون هویدا
Permanent Representative of Iran to the United Nations
In office
Prime Minister Amir-Abbas Hoveyda
Jamshid Amouzegar
Jafar Sharif-Emami
Gholam Reza Azhari
Shapour Bakhtiar
Preceded by Mehdi Vakil
Succeeded by Mansour Farhang
Personal details
Born 21 September 1924
Damascus, Syria
Died 3 November 2006(2006-11-03) (aged 82)
Clifton, Virginia, United States
Political party Rastakhiz Party
Website Official website

Fereydoon Hoveyda (Persian: فریدون هویدا ‎‎ Fereydūn Hoveyda, 21 September 1924 – 3 November 2006) was an Iranian diplomat, writer and thinker. He was the Iranian ambassador to the United Nations from 1971 until 1979.

Early life and education[edit]

Hoveyda was born in Damascus on 23 September 1924 where his father, Habibollah Hoveyda, was the Consul-General of Persia.[1] His mother was Afsar-ol-Molouk Fatmeh, a Qajar princess.[2] Upon marriage his father was given the title of Ayn al-Molk (Eye of the Kingdom) by the Qajar ruler of the country.[2]

His brother, Amir Abbas Hoveyda, a former prime minister of Iran under the Shah, was executed after the Iranian Revolution in 1979.[3] They were nephews of Abdol Hossein Sardari, who is known for saving many Jews in Paris during World War II.

Fereydoun Hoveyda was raised in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Iran. He completed a Ph.D. in international law and economics at the Sorbonne, Paris, France in 1948.[3]


Hoveyda joined the foreign ministry in the early 1940s.[1] A participant in the final drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, he worked in UNESCO from 1951 to 1966.[1] In the late 1960s, he returned to Iran and worked in the Iranian Foreign Ministry as the undersecretary for international and economic affairs. He was also deputy foreign minister.[3] From 1971 to 1979 he represented Iran at the United Nations.

Having been forced out of the Iranian Foreign Ministry following the 1979 revolution,Hoveyda became a senior fellow and member of the Executive Committee of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy (NCAFP).[3]

Apart from politics, he was active in the field of cinema and was a founding member of the editorial board of the celebrated film magazine Cahiers du cinéma.[4]


Hoveyda was a well-known author of 18 novels and non-fiction books in French, English, and German.

  • The Fall of the Shah (1980)[3]
  • Que Veulent les Arabes? (What do Arabs Want?) (1991)[4]
  • Petite histoire du roman policier, forew. by Jean Cocteau
  • The Sword of Islam
  • The Broken Crescent: The Threat of Militant Islamic Fundamentalism (2002)[4]
  • The Hidden Meaning of Mass Communications (2000)[5]
  • The Shah and the Ayatollah: Islamic Revolution and Iranian Mythology (2003)[4]
  • Dead End Islam

He was also the cowriter of the screenplay for Roberto Rossellini's 1959 film India.[4]


Hoveyda wed twice. His first spouse, Touran Mansour, with whom he married in the 1940s was the daughter of Ali Mansour, one of the prime ministers of Iran.[2]

Hoveyda died in Clifton on 3 November 2006 at age 82 after a long fight against cancer.[1] He left behind his second wife Gisela[2] and two daughters Mandana and Roxana.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e Hevesi, Dennis (7 November). "Fereydoun Hoveyda, 82, Shah's Ambassador, Dies". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 August 2013.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  2. ^ a b c d "Remembering Fereydoun Hoveyda". Asharq Alawsat. 22 November 2006. Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e Sullivan, Patricia (8 November 2006). "Fereydoun Hoveyda; Iranian Delegate to United Nations During Shah's Rule". The Washington Post. Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "Fereydoun Hoveyda, 82; ex-Iranian ambassador to the United Nations". Los Angeles Times. 7 November 2006. Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  5. ^ Fereydoun Hoveyda (1 January 2000). The Hidden Meaning of Mass Communications: Cinema, Books, and Television in the Age of Computers. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-275-96996-7. Retrieved 9 August 2013.