Colin Stewart

Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) in Cyprus and Head of UNFICYP 

SRSG Stewart succeeds Elizabeth Spehar, who completed her assignment on 30 November 2021. 

Mr. Stewart, who most recently served as Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO) (2017-2021), brings a demonstrated record of leadership and management, with over 28 years of experience in peace and security and international affairs.

He previously served as Deputy Head and Chief of Staff of the United Nations Office to the African Union in Addis Ababa, and held appointments in several United Nations field missions, including as Acting Chief of Staff and Chief of Political Affairs at the United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT) (2007 to 2009).  He was a Canadian diplomat from 1990 to 1997.

Mr. Stewart is a graduate of Laval University in Canada. He is fluent in English and French.



Assistant Police Commissioner Satu Koivu 

Senior Police Adviser of United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP)

Satu Koivu is an Assistant Police Commissioner at the National Police Board of Finland with 33 years of experience as a police officer. With long term experience and wide knowledge and education of policing at strategic and operational levels, her leadership and management skills have been approved in practice. She has held positions such as Senior Police Adviser and Head of Police Component.

In 2014, she was the Assistant Police Commissioner/Chief of Human Recourses Development at the National Police Board of Finland. In 2009 until 2013 she served as a Chief Superintendent at Police Department in Finland. She was First in line supervisor, Sergeant for uniformed police patrols (team leader) at Police Department from 1996 – 2004. She began her career 1988 – 1995 as a Constable and Senior detective constable (crime investigation) at Police Department in Finland.

Her international experience includes being a lecturer as an expert, organizer and chairman in several international meetings and a lecturer as an expert on Human Resources, Gender and Capacity building and development in the context of crises management at the EU Police Services Training Conference and EU CSDP High Level Course.

In 2012, she was Team leader and lecturer for Eastern Africa Standby Force Coordination mechanism (EASFCOM) organised UNPOL civilian police officer course in Rwanda while she was also a lecture and mentor in European Union Police Officer Course, The Crisis Management Centre, Finland (EUPOL). From 2003 until 2011 she was a Project member in training and education project for future Namibian Police Leaders and a Police Training Adviser and Lead Police Adviser in EU Police Co-ordinating Office for Palestinian Police Support in Palestine Occupied territories (EUPOL COPPS).

Assistant Police Commissioner Koivu holds a Master of Police Sciences from the University of Turku and professional teacher education from the University of Helsinki.

She is an active member of the Zonta International Foundation since 1995. She is married and has two daughters.



Heads of Mission /Special Representatives

23 Ms. Elizabeth Spehar (Canada) June 2016 - November 2021
22 Ms. Lisa Buttenheim (USA)  June 2010 - June 2016
21 Mr. Taye-Brook Zerihoun (Ethiopia) May 2008 - April 2010
20 Ms. Elizabeth Spehar (Canada) 30 March 2008 – 07 May 2008
19 Mr. Michael Moller (Denmark) January 2006 - March 2008
18 Mr. Zbiniew Wlosowicz (Poland) 2005 - 2006
17 Mr. Alvaro de Soto (Special Adviser, Peru) 2000 - 2004
16 Mr. James Holger (Acting, Chile) 1999 - 2000
15 Dame Ann Hercus (New Zealand)  1999 - 1999
14 Mr. Diego Cordovez (on a non resident basis) 1997 - 1999
13 Mr. Han Sung - Joo (Republic of Korea) 1996 - 1997
12 * Mr. Joe Clark (on a non-resident basis)  1993 - 1996
11 Mr. Oscar Camilion (Argentina) 1988 - 1993
10 Mr. James Holger (Acting, Chile) 1984 - 1988
9 Mr. Hugo J. Gobbi (Argentina)  1980 – 1984
8 Mr. Reynaldo Galindo Pohl (El Salvador)  1978 - 1980
7 Mr. Remy Gorge (Acting)  1977 - 1978
6 Mr. Javier Perez de Cuellar (Peru)  1975 - 1977
5 Mr. Luis Weckmann-Muñoz (Mexico)  1974 - 1975
4 Mr. Bibiano Fernandez Osorio - Tafall  1967 - 1974
3 Mr. P.P. Spinelli (Acting)  1967 - 1967
2 Mr. Carlos A. Bernardes (Brazil)  1964 - 1967
1 Mr. Galo Plaza Lasso (appointed as Mediator in September, Ecuador)  1964 - 1964

* In August 1994, in connection with the change of command from Major-General Minehane to Brigadier-General Vartiainen, Mr. Clark became Chief of Mission. The function of Chief of Mission reflects a unified arrangement for the United Nations operation in Cyprus and includes UNFICYP. In the absence of the Special Representative, the Deputy Special Representative assumed this function.


UNFICYP Force Commander history



Major General Ingrid Gjerde

May 2021 – July


Major General Cheryl Pearce 

Jan 2019 – Dec



Major General Mohammad Humayun Kabir (Bangladesh)

Aug 2016-July 2018



Major General Kristin Lund (Norway)

Aug 2014-July 2016


Major General Chao Liu (China)

Jan 2011 - Aug 2014


Rear Admiral Mario Sánchez Debernardi (Peru)

Apr 2008 - Dec 2010


Major-General Rafael Jose Barni (Argentina)

Mar 2006 - Mar 2008


Major-General Hebert Figoli (Uruguay)

Jan 2004 - Jan 2006


Lieutenant-General Jin Ha Hwang (Republic of Korea)

Jan 2002 - Dec 2003


Major-General Victory Rana (Nepal)

Dec 1999 - Dec 2001


Major General Evergisto Arturo de Vergara (Argentina)

Feb 1997 - Dec 1999


Brigadier-General Ahti Toimi Vartiainen

Aug 1994 - Feb1997


Major-General Michael F. Minehane (Ireland)

Apr 1992 - Aug 1994


Major-General Clive Milner (Canada)

Apr 1988 - Apr 1992


Major-General Gunther G. Greindl (Austria)

Mar 1981 - Apr 1988


Major-General J. J. Quinn (Ireland)

Dec 1976 - Mar 1981


Lieutenant-General Dewan Prem Chand (India)

Dec 1969 - Dec 1976


Lieutenant-General I A E Martola (Finland

May 1966 - Dec 1969


Brigadier A. J. Wilson (Acting, United Kingdom)

Dec 1965 - May 1966


General K. S. Thimayya (India - died in Cyprus)

Jun 1964 - Dec 1965


General Gyani (India)

Mar 1964 - Jun 1964