List of people declared persona non grata

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This is a list of people declared persona non grata. Persona non grata (Latin, plural: personae non gratae), literally meaning "an unwelcome person", is a legal term used in diplomacy that indicates a proscription against a foreign person entering or remaining in the country. It is the most serious form of censure that one country can apply to foreign diplomats, who are otherwise protected by diplomatic immunity from arrest and other normal kinds of prosecution.

List of people who are declared personae non gratae[edit]




  • In October 2010, Italian singer Al Bano was included in the list of personae non gratae in Azerbaijan due to visiting Nagorno Karabakh without the permission of Azerbaijan.[41]
  • On March 30, 2011, The Kuwaiti Minister of Foreign Affairs declared three Iranian diplomats, including the Ambassador, personae non gratae for allegedly spying. Upon orders from His Highness the Emir of Kuwait, the deputy prime minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs expelled the high ranking Iranian diplomats.[42]
  • On April 5, 2011, the Ecuador Ministry declared United States Ambassador Heather Hodges persona non grata after she did not provide sufficient answers about a leaked diplomatic cable related to Ecuador. In retaliation the United States declared the Ecuadorean Ambassador Luis Gallegos persona non grata on April 7, 2011.[43]
  • On April 27, 2011, Malawi declared British High Commissioner Fergus Cochrane-Dyet persona non grata a week after a diplomatic cable had been leaked in which Cochrane-Dyet stated that Malawian President Bingu wa Mutharika was "becoming ever more autocratic and intolerant of criticism".[44][45]
  • On May 1, 2011, the Libyan ambassador to the United Kingdom, Omar Jelban, was given 24 hours to leave the country after Foreign Secretary William Hague said he was persona non grata. The expulsion was in response to attacks on British embassy premises in Tripoli following the death of Colonel Gaddafi's son in a NATO air strike.[46]
  • On May 6, 2011, France declared 14 former Libyan diplomats in Paris to be personae non gratae because of "conduct and activities that are not compatible with the UN resolutions, particularly resolution 1973" and "going against the protection of Libyan civilians".[47]
  • On May 19, 2011, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Israel's military attaché to Moscow Col. Vadim Leiderman was declared persona non grata after being caught receiving secret information from a Russian citizen.[48]
  • On January 6, 2012, the United States notified the Venezuelan government of the declaration of Venezuelan diplomat Livia Acosta Noguera persona non grata and demanded that she leave the United States by January 10, 2012. The declaration was announced by the United States on January 8, and came after an FBI investigation into allegations reported in a Univision documentary. The documentary purported that several diplomats from various countries, including Venezuela, Iran and Cuba were seeking information to commit cyberattacks on United States facilities and had been in contact with a group posing as Mexican hackers at the National Autonomous University of Mexico.[49][50]
  • On April 8, 2012, Israel declared German poet Günter Grass, recipient of the 1999 Nobel Prize in Literature, persona non grata[51] because of his poem "What Must Be Said", which warned that Israel threatened an "already fragile world peace".[52]
  • On May 29, 2012, in response to the Houla massacre in Syria, the French government declared Syrian Ambassador Lamia Shakkour, and two other embassy officials, personae non gratae. The Syrian ambassador to the Netherlands was also declared persona non grata by Dutch Foreign Minister Uri Rosenthal.[53]
  • On September 7, 2012, the Canadian government declared all Iranian diplomats in Canada personae non gratae. The Canadian embassy in Tehran also was closed.[54]

  • Marin Mema for his reports in 19 August 2012 he was banned from entering Greece and declared persona non grata.[55] Mema is mostly involved in investigative journalism; his reports range from government corruption to human rights abuses. In 2011–2012 he reported from Margariti and Filiates about the properties of the Chams (Cham Albanians who used to live in the area until World War II) that have been appropriated by the Greek state. UJA (Union of Journalists of Albania) protested in front of the Greek embassy in Tirana against the entry ban.[56]
  • On May 14, 2013, Russia's Foreign Ministry declared Ryan Fogle, third secretary of the Political Department of the United States Embassy in Moscow, persona non grata. He was caught allegedly trying to recruit a Russian special services staff member and accused of being a CIA agent.[57] On May 17, FSB revealed the identity of the CIA Station Chief as Steven Hall in further retaliation.[58][59]
  • In June 2013, Spanish opera singer Montserrat Caballé was included in a list of personae non gratae in Azerbaijan for visiting of Nagorno Karabakh without permission of Azerbaijan.[41][60]
  • On July 6, 2013, the Philippine Bureau of Immigration prevented Dutch activist Thomas van Beersum from leaving the Philippines at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila. Thomas van Beersum participated in a political rally against the Philippine government during President Benigno Aquino III's State of the Nation Address. Van Beersum gained the attention of the media when a photo of him berating a police officer into tears went viral on the internet which sparked the outrage of Filipino netizens. Van Beersum went to the Philippines using a tourist visa. The Dutch activist was deported on August 7 due to "overstaying" and "for engaging in partisan political activity" and was blacklisted as persona non grata.[61][62]
  • On November 23, 2013, Egypt declared the Turkish ambassador Huseyin Avni Botsali persona non grata due to criticisms made by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on the overthrowing of Mohamed Morsi as President of Egypt.[63]
  • On December 24, 2013, Jagmeet Singh, a Canadian Ontario MPP, was barred from travelling to India, as he was considered 'persona non grata' by the Indian government.[64][65] Singh's visa application was refused by the Indian consulate in Toronto, Canada. He had been accused of having links to Khalistan extremists based in Canada who wish to carve a separate religious Sikh state out of India through armed struggle.[66][67] On number of occasions, Jagmeet Singh has been unable to denounce the Khalistani terrorists who bombed the Air India Flight 182, which was the deadliest act of aviation terrorism prior to 9/11 attacks in 2001—killing all aboard: 329 people, including 268 Canadian citizens, 27 British citizens and 24 Indian citizens.[68] Singh also received the distinction of being the first sitting member of a Western legislature to be barred from travelling to India, he was a member of the provincial parliament (MPP) in Ontario at the time of being denied a visa to India.[69][70]
  • On July 7, 2014, the foreign ministry of the Kingdom of Bahrain demanded the immediate departure of Tom Malinowski, United States Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor. The state news organization, BNA, reported that Malinowski had "held meetings with a particular party to the detriment of other interlocutors, thus discriminating between one people, contravening diplomatic norms and flouting normal interstate relations," and was thus declared persona non grata.[71]
  • In December 2014, the Government of Estonia declared Italian journalist Giulietto Chiesa persona non grata. Chiesa was a former Member of the European Parliament who had belonged to the Delegation to the EU-Russia Parliamentary Cooperation Committee and had run as a candidate for the Latvian Russian Union. He had been due to speak at a conference on Europe and Russia relations which the Estonian security services believed to be a front for Russia's foreign intelligence services. He entered Estonia for the conference and was arrested in Tallinn and deported.[72]
  • In May 2015, American photographer and travel blogger Nathan Allen was declared persona non grata by the Philippine government in the region of Sorsogon. The declaration was made in response to a Facebook post on Allen's "I Dreamed Of This" page, said to be criticizing the effectiveness of the Philippine Department of Tourism.[73]
  • In October 2015, the government of Eritrea declared historian Michela Wrong (I Didn't Do It for You: How the World Betrayed a Small African Nation), novelist Hannah Pool (My Father's Daughter) and short story writer Jacob M. Appel (Scouting for the Reaper) personae non gratae for their criticism of the regime of Isaias Afewerki.[74]
  • In November 2015, Miss World contestant Anastasia Lin by China "apparently because of her outspoken advocacy for human rights and religious freedom in China." China, however, has given no official reason for declaring her persona non grata.[75]
  • On October 27, 2016, A Pakistani diplomat in India, Mehmood Akhtar,[76] was arrested for a short while before being declared 'persona non grata' by the Indian foreign secretary for 'espionage'. This action came from the Indian government amid increasing tensions between both the countries including cross border attacks with civilian and military casualties being report by both the sides.[77]
  • On October 27, 2016, The Pakistani foreign secretary summoned an Indian envoy, Surjeet Singh and informed him of his expulsion from the country. The Indian diplomat was declared persona non grata, shortly after the Indian government detained a Pakistani diplomat before expelling him. Surjeet Singh was also questioned about the violation of the Vienna Convention by the Indian government while it detained a foreign envoy. These actions highly stressed the diplomatic relations between India and Pakistan.[78]
  • On December 29, 2016, thirty-five Russian diplomats were declared 'personae non gratae' by the United States in response to the alleged Kremlin-backed interference in the 2016 United States presidential election.[79]
  • On March 4, 2017, the government of Malaysia declared the North Korean Ambassador to Malaysia, Kang Chol, as persona non grata due to the murder case of Kim Jong-nam (the brother of Kim Jong-un, North Korean supreme leader) by VX nerve agent.[80] Kang Chol was summoned by the ministry in Putrajaya but failed to appear just before the declaration & an apology was demanded by the Malaysian government due to accusations made by the North Korean ambassador for Malaysia.[81]
  • In July 2017, the Venezuelan government of Nicolás Maduro declared five former Latin American leaders as personae non gratae as a result of their participation as international observers to the unofficial Venezuelan referendum held by the opposition. Former Mexican President Vicente Fox was banned on July 16.[82] Former President of Colombia Andrés Pastrana, former President of Bolivia Jorge Quiroga and former Presidents of Costa Rica Laura Chinchilla and Miguel Ángel Rodríguez were banned on July 18.[82] Foreign Minister Samuel Moncada said the Latin American leaders invited as observers were "political sicarios", "clowns" and "mercineries" that "sell themselves to the highest bidder to go to various destinations and repeat what they are told"[83]
  • On 2 August 2017, the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Rogozin was declared persona non grata by the Government of Moldova.[84]
  • On September 2017, the North Korean ambassador to Mexico Kim Hyong Gil was declared persona non grata by the Government of Mexico and was given 72 hours to leave Mexico because of North Korea's nuclear activity at the time.[85]
  • In a statement issued on Monday, October 23, 2017, the Malian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced the expulsion from the national territory of Mr. Robin Guiovanopoulos within 72 hours, a teacher from a French school in Bamako who used the term "Azawad" in a history/geography assignment distributed to his students. Azawad is the name given to northern Mali by the Tuareg-dominated rebellion since the 1990s and claimed its independence.[86][87]
  • On January 28, 2018, Anthony Fouchard, a French correspondent for Rfi and France_24 in Mali, is declared Persona Non Grata in Mali by the Minister of the Digital Economy and Communication, following a publication on Twitter, likening it to a provocation or a joke, relating to the suicide attack that occurred the same day in Menaka in the north of the country. He has 24 hours to leave the territory. He left the next day.[88][89]
  • On April 5, 2018, sixty U.S. diplomats to Russia were declared personas non grata by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.[90]
  • On April 21, 2018 Serbian defence minister, Aleksandar Vulin, was declared persona non grata in Croatia. As a retaliation measure, Croatian defence minister, Damir Krstičević, was declared persona non grata in Serbia.
  • On April 10, 2018, Israel announced that the then Lord Mayor of Dublin, Mícheál Mac Donncha would be refused entry into Israel. Mac Donncha was able to enter Israel and travel to Ramallah. It was later discovered that Israeli officials had mistaken an image caption Ardmhéara Mícheál MacDonncha – as his full name. Ardmheára is the Irish for Lord Mayor. [91] [92]
  • On April 25, 2018, Philippine Ambassador to Kuwait Renato Villa was affirmed persona non grata by the Kuwait Foreign Ministry and mandated to vacate Kuwait within one week because of rescuing maltreated Filipino household workers from different households as part of President Rodrigo Duterte's plan of banning total OFW deployment to Kuwait.[93]
  • On May 22, 2018, the U.S. Chargé d'affaires to Venezuela, Todd D. Robinson and his deputy, Brian Naranjo, were declared personas non grata by Nicolas Maduro after growing U.S. sanctions and the Chargé's statements that the recent re-election of Maduro was a "power grab" and that the elections were neither "free or fair".[94]
  • On July 14, 2018, India declared a Pakistan High Commission staffer 'persona non-grata' after he was arrested by Delhi Police on charges of espionage. He was caught along with documents about deployment details of BSF along the Indo-Pak border.[95]
  • On August 5, 2018, the Canadian Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Dennis Horak, was declared persona non grata after Canada called for the release of civil activists in detention.
  • On January 1, 2019, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Somalia declared a persona non grata status on the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations Nicholas Haysom after Haysom was accused of deliberately interfering in the domestic affairs of the country and undermining the independence of the Government of Somalia
  • On March 11, 2019, the Ukrainian Culture Ministry declared a persona non grata status for the Italian recording artist, actor, and winemaker Albano Carrisi, known as Al Bano, for being a national security threat. The singer openly announced that he thinks Crimea is Russian territory and is said to be a fan of Russian President Vladimir Putin. A ban and persona non grata status on the same grounds has also been announced on December 10, 2018 on the Italian actor and director Michele Placido.
  • On September 5, 2019, the United States declared Romanian former Socialist party leader Liviu Dragnea persona non grata due to his conviction on corruption.
  • On December 10, 2019, the Government of Mali declared Christophe Sivillon, United Nations' MUNISMA Chief Bureau of Kidal Region, a region controlled by Tuareg rebels since the Second Kidal Battle, persona non grata due to a declaration that threatened the sovereignty of Mali.
  • On December 10, 2019, Kosovo declared the Austrian author Peter Handke persona non grata after he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.[96]
  • On December 23, 2019, Daniel Foote was recalled to the United States from Zambia after his position as Ambassador was declared "no longer tenable" by the sitting government after his criticism of a lengthy prison sentence for a homosexual couple, effectively rendering persona non grata.


  • On May 14, 2020, Dr Walter Kazadi Mulombo and three of his team was decleared persona non grata from Burundi due to "interfering in the country's internal affairs". Dr Kazadi Mulombo and his staff were representatives from WHO with the mission to report Burundi's efforts to restrict the COVID-19 pandemic.[97]
  • On June 1, 2020, two Pakistani Embassy workers working in Visa Section were arrested by Special Cell of Delhi Police on charges on espionage and shortly after declared 'persona non grata'.[98] The two were allegedly using fake identities to establish contact in Indian Railways to get details of army movement.[99]
  • On August 8, 2020, three Russian diplomats were expelled by Slovakia because "their activities were in contradiction with the Vienna convention on diplomatic relations". Slovak officials did not provide further details, but the justification brings the expulsions into connection with the murder of a former Chechen rebel Zelimkhan Khangoshvili with Georgian citizenship in Berlin on summer 2019. Slovak media have reported that one of people suspected of involvement in the killing, had travelled to Europe on a Slovak visa.[100]
  • On August 19, 2020, following anti-government protests in Belarus, President Alexander Lukashenko was declared persona non grata in Lithuania[101] for allegedly rigging elections[102], resorting to brutal violence against peaceful protesters[103] and later torturing them in custody[104]. European People's Party, the largest party in European Parliament, called for declaring Lukashenko persona non grata in all EU member states[105].
  • On August 29, 2020, the Russian foreign ministry announced that it had expelled and declared persona non grata a Norwegian diplomat in a reciprocal move after the Norwegian foreign ministry expelled a Russian diplomat on August 18 for alleged espionage. The Norwegian foreign ministry called Russia's reciprocal move "completely unfounded".[106]
  • On September 2, 2020, New York City Governor Andrew Cuomo declared Donald Trump persona non grata in New York City after Trump threatened to withdraw federal funds from “anarchist” municipalities.[107]

See also[edit]


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