UK appoints new British High Commissioner to the Maldives

The UK has appointed John Rankin as British High Commissioner to the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and Non-Resident British High Commissioner to the Republic of Maldives, succeeding Dr Peter Hayes in February 2011.

A statement from the High Commission said that Dr Hayes would be transferring to another diplomatic service appointment. 

Rankin has also served as Deputy Head of Mission at the British Embassy in Dublin, working on the Northern Ireland peace process, and was Her Majesty’s Consul General in Boston between 2003 and 2007, the High Commission stated.

He joined the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in 1988 as an Assistant Legal Adviser and served as legal adviser to the UK Mission to the UN and to the UK Mission to the Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. He has been Director, Americas in the FCO since 2008, responsible for a network of over 30 British Embassies, High Commissions and other posts in North, Central and South America and the Caribbean.

John has a degree in Scots Law from the University of Glasgow and a Masters Degree in International Law from McGill University, Montreal. Prior to joining the FCO he qualified and practiced as a solicitor in Scotland and was a lecturer in public law at the University of Aberdeen.

Rankin said he was “I delighted and honoured to be appointed as High Commissioner to Sri Lanka. The United Kingdom and Sri Lanka have close and long-standing links, and I look forward to furthering the partnership between our countries.”

He added that he “similarly looks forward to developing even stronger relations with the Maldives as we pursue together our common interests.”