Biography of Dr. Hans Blix

IAEA Director General from 1981 to 1997

Dr. Hans Blix

Dr. Hans Blix of Sweden, IAEA Director General from 1981 to 1997, guided the Agency through the Chernobyl disaster, revelations of a clandestine nuclear weapons programme in Iraq and the DPRK's safeguards violations. Under his direction, the framework for strengthened safeguards was established, and the international legal regime for nuclear energy was bolstered.

Hans Martin Blix was born in Uppsala, Sweden on 28 June 1928. He studied at the University of Uppsala and at Columbia University, receiving his Ph.D. from Cambridge University. In 1959, he became Doctor of Laws at the Stockholm University, and in 1960, was appointed Associate Professor in International Law.

From 1963 to 1976, Dr. Blix was Head of Department at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Sweden and served as Legal Adviser on International Law. From 1961 until 1981, he was a member of Sweden's delegation to the United Nations General Assembly, while from 1962 to 1978 he was a member of the Swedish delegation to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. In 1976, he became Under-Secretary of State at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, in charge of international development cooperation. He was appointed Minister for Foreign Affairs in October 1978, serving in that position until 1979.

Following his tenure as IAEA Director General, Mr. Blix was named Executive Chairman of the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) by United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He served in that position from January 2000 until June 2003.

Last update: 16 October 2014