Ignacio Rupérez

Ignacio Rupérez Rubio (17 October 1943 – 25 December 2015) was a Spanish diplomat, journalist, and writer. Rupérez was appointed Ambassador to Iraq on 3 June 2005, becoming the first Ambassador to Iraq since 1991, when the Spanish embassy in Baghdad was closed during the Gulf War.[1][2] He served as Ambassador to Iraq from 2005 until 2008.[1] He was later appointed Ambassador to Honduras.[1] Rupérez was the brother of Javier Rupérez, a diplomat and politician.[1]

Rupérez began his career as a newspaper journalist, including ABC and El País.[3] He became a Spanish diplomat in 1980.[1] His first diplomatic posting was to Cairo, Egypt.[3] He transferred to Tel Aviv, Israel, which had recently established diplomatic relations with Spain, in 1986.[3] Rupérez was next posted to the Embassy of Spain in Havana, Cuba, from 1989 to 1992.[3] He was then sent to Kiev, Ukraine, as a deputy in 1992.[3]

Ignacio Rupérez was posted to the Spanish diplomatic mission in Iraq by the government of José María Aznar in 1997.[3] Spain had closed its embassy and recalled its ambassador in 1991 during the first Gulf War.[1] Since there was no ambassador, Ruperez was posted as chargé d'affaires until 2000.[3]

He became the Vice President of the Comité Hispano-Americano in 2003.[1][2]

On 3 June 2005 Ignacio Rupérez was appointed Ambassador to Iraq, becoming the first Spanish ambassador since 1991.[1] He served as Ambassador from 2005 to 2008. In a 2008 interview with El País, Rupérez called the situation in Iraq and the Iraq War "more complicated than Vietnam."[4] He later published his book, "Collateral Damage," in which he criticized the 2003 invasion of Iraq.[3]

Rupérez was next appointed Ambassador to Honduras in 2009. However, then President Manuel Zelaya was ousted in a coup d'état during the 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis shortly before Rupérez was scheduled to arrive in the country.[3] The government of Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero criticized Zelaya's ouster. As a result, Rupérez was denied entry into Honduras by the new Honduran government.[3][5] Instead, Rupérez spent the first fourteen months of his Ambassadorship to Honduras stationed at the Spanish Embassy in neighboring El Salvador.[3] He was finally allowed into Honduras when relations between the two countries improved.[3]

Most recently, Rupérez has served as Ambassador-at-large for Muslim Communities and Organizations Abroad.[3]

Ignacio Rupérez died at a hospital in Madrid on 25 December 2015 at the age of 72, following a long illness.[2]

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Fallece Ignacio Rupérez, ex embajador español en Irak y Honduras". ABC. 2015-12-26. Retrieved 2016-01-22.
  2. ^ a b c "Fallece el exembajador español en Irak Ignacio Rupérez". El País. 2015-12-25. Retrieved 2016-01-22.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Death of Ignacio Rupérez, former ambassador to Iraq and Honduras". The Diplomat in Spain. 2015-12-27. Retrieved 2016-01-22.
  4. ^ Higueras, Georgina (2008-06-01). "Irak es más complicado que Vietnam". El País. Retrieved 2016-01-22.
  5. ^ "El Gobierno ordena el regreso del embajador en Honduras". ABC. 2009-12-08. Retrieved 2016-01-22.

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