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The Club de Madrid is an independent non-profit organization created to promote democracy and change in the international community. Composed of 95 regular members, 64 of whom are former presidents and 39 of whom are former prime ministers (some are both)[1] from 65 countries, the Club de Madrid is the world's largest forum of former heads of state and government.[citation needed]

Club of Madrid
Club of Madrid logo.png
MottoDemocracy That Delivers
HeadquartersMadrid, Spain
Vice Presidents

Among its main goals are the strengthening of democratic institutions and counselling on the resolution of political conflicts in two key areas: democratic leadership and governance and response to crisis and post-crisis situations.

The Club de Madrid works together with governments, inter-governmental organizations, civil society, scholars and representatives from the business world, to encourage dialogue in order to foster social and political change. The Club de Madrid also searches for effective methods to provide technical advice and recommendations to nations that are taking steps to establish democracy.


As of March 2014, there are 95 full Members, all of whom are previous government officials with full voting rights. The Club also has institutional members and foundations – those who belong to private and public organizations that share similar democratic objectives, including FRIDE, the Gorbachev Foundation of North America (GFNA), both original sponsors of the founding conference in 2001, the Madrid City Council, the Regional Government of Madrid, and the Government of Spain. Additionally, there are six honorary members (e.g. Kofi Annan, Aung San Suu Kyi) and a number of fellows, who are experts on democratic changeover.

The Club is based in Madrid (Spain), although meetings are held worldwide. Currently, Vaira Vike-Freiberga, the former President of Latvia (1999–2007), is the organization's president, and it has two vice presidents: Jenny Shipley (New Zealand) and Jorge Fernando Quiroga (Bolivia). The former president of the Club of Madrid is Wim Kok (2009–2013).

The Club was created from an event that was held in October 2001 in Madrid, a four-day Conference on Democratic Transition and Consolidation (CDTC). This event brought together 35 world leaders, over 100 esteemed academics and policy specialists from Europe, the Americas, Asia, and Africa to discuss ideas and means of implementation from both objective and subjective perspectives. The conference discussed eight main topics:

  • Constitutional design
  • The Legislative branch and its relation with the Executive branch
  • The Judicial branch and its relation with Executive branch
  • Anti-corruption procedures
  • The role of the armed forces and security forces
  • Reform of the state bureaucracy
  • Strengthening of political and social pluralism and of political parties
  • Economic and social conditions

Structure and organizationEdit

The Club de Madrid's primary asset is its membership, which includes 95 distinguished former heads of state and government of democratic nations. The comparative advantage of the Club de Madrid is based on the following key assets:

  • Personal experience and status of its Members
  • Access to the world's leading experts on democracy
  • Specialization in democratic transition and consolidation issues
  • Practical approach of its activities, through the implementation of projects with tangible results

Full Members are members of the Club de Madrid who provide their personal and political experience as former Heads of State and Government. Their appointment, based on a proposal from the Board of Directors, is approved by the General Assembly.

Direct exchanges with current leaders of countries in the process of democratic transition on a peer-to-peer basis, and the Member's ability to deliver the right message at the right time, are two of the major assets of the Club de Madrid. In this sense, the Members of the Club de Madrid can also help focus much needed international attention on targeted countries and leverage the work of other institutions trying to promote democracy.

The Club's members are supported by a network of world-class experts who work together to offer assistance on a range of democratic reform issues. The Club de Madrid is composed of four executive and advisory bodies:

  • General Assembly
  • Board of Directors
  • General Secretariat
  • Advisory Committee

Funding sourcesEdit

The Club is a non-profit organisation and members offer their services on a pro bono basis, It exists financially on donations which are used to support a permanent secretariat and fund some specific project. The Club's accounts are audited annually by an external organisation.

The Club of Madrid Foundation (USA)Edit

The Club of Madrid Foundation Inc. (COMFI) is a grant-making foundation that has US 501(c)(3) tax exemption status. It exists to raise funds in support of the Club's charitable and educational activities.

COMFI is independent and not controlled by the Club itself, but solely by a four-person Board of Directors, each of whom resides in the US.


Several members of the Club played prominent roles in the diplomatic and military proceedings aimed at ending the wars in the former Yugoslavia during the 1990s:

List of current membersEdit

Name Age Nation Party Office(s) held
  Valdas Adamkus 93   Lithuania None President of Lithuania (1998–2003, 2004–2009)
  Esko Aho 65   Finland Centre Prime Minister of Finland (1991–1995)
  Martti Ahtisaari 82   Finland Social Democratic President of Finland (1994–2000)
  Sadiq al-Mahdi 83   Sudan Umma Prime Minister of Sudan (1966–1967, 1986–1989)
  Óscar Arias 79   Costa Rica PLN President of Costa Rica (1986–1990, 2006–2010)
  Hamadi Jebali 70   Tunisia Ennahdha Head of Government of Tunisia (2011–2013)
  Mehdi Jomaa 57   Tunisia None Head of Government of Tunisia (2014–2015)
  José María Aznar 66   Spain PP President of the Government of Spain (1996–2004)
  Michelle Bachelet 68   Chile Socialist President of Chile (2006–2010, 2014–2018)
Executive Director of UN Women (2010–2013)
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (2018–)
  Rupiah Banda 82   Zambia MMD President of Zambia (2008–2011)
  Carl Bildt 70   Sweden Moderate Prime Minister of Sweden (1991–1994)
High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina (1995–1997)
  Valdis Birkavs 77   Latvia LC Prime Minister of Latvia (1993–1994)
  Kjell Magne Bondevik 72   Norway Christian Democratic Prime Minister of Norway (1997–2000, 2001–2005)
  Gro Harlem Brundtland 80   Norway Labour Prime Minister of Norway (1981, 1986–1989, 1990–1996)
Director-General of the World Health Organization (1998–2003)
  John Bruton 72   Ireland Fine Gael Taoiseach of Ireland (1994–1997)
EU Ambassador to the United States (2004–2009)
  Jerzy Buzek 79   Poland Civic Platform Prime Minister of Poland (1997–2001)
President of the European Parliament (2009–2012)
  Felipe Calderón 57   Mexico PAN President of Mexico (2006–2012)
  Micheline Calmy-Rey 74    Switzerland Social Democratic Member of the Federal Council (2003–2011)
(President in 2007 and 2011)
  Kim Campbell 72   Canada Progressive Conservative Prime Minister of Canada (1993)
  Fernando Henrique Cardoso 88   Brazil Social Democracy President of Brazil (1995–2003)
  Aníbal Cavaco Silva 80   Portugal Social Democratic Prime Minister of Portugal (1985–1995)
President of Portugal (2006–2016)
  Joaquim Chissano 80   Mozambique FRELIMO President of Mozambique (1986–2005)
  Jean Chrétien 85   Canada Liberal Prime Minister of Canada (1993–2003)
  Bill Clinton 73   United States Democratic President of the United States (1993–2001)
  Philip Dimitrov 64   Bulgaria SDS Prime Minister of Bulgaria (1991–1992)
  Luísa Diogo 61   Mozambique FRELIMO Prime Minister of Mozambique (2004–2010)
  Leonel Fernández 65   Dominican Republic PLD President of the Dominican Republic (1996–2000, 2004–2012)
  José María Figueres 64   Costa Rica PLN President of Costa Rica (1994–1998)
  Vigdís Finnbogadóttir 89   Iceland None President of Iceland (1980–1996)
  Vicente Fox 77   Mexico PAN President of Mexico (2000–2006)
  Eduardo Frei Ruiz-Tagle 77   Chile Christian Democratic President of Chile (1994–2000)
  Yasuo Fukuda 83   Japan Liberal Democratic Prime Minister of Japan (2007–2008)
  César Gaviria 72   Colombia Liberal President of Colombia (1990–1994)
Secretary General of the Organization of American States (1994–2004)
  Amine Pierre Gemayel 77   Lebanon Kata'eb President of Lebanon (1982–1988)
  Felipe González 77   Spain Socialist Workers President of the Government of Spain (1982–1996)
  Mikhail Gorbachev 88   Russia
  Soviet Union
Communist (until 1991) General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (1985–1991)
Chairman of the Supreme Soviet/President of the Soviet Union (1988–1991)
  Alfred Gusenbauer 59   Austria Social Democratic Chancellor of Austria (2007–2008)
  António Guterres 70   Portugal Socialist Prime Minister of Portugal (1995–2002)
UN High Commissioner for Refugees (2005–2016)
UN Secretary-General (2016–present)
  Bacharuddin Jusuf Habibie 83   Indonesia Golkar President of Indonesia (1998–1999)
  Tarja Halonen 75   Finland Social Democratic President of Finland (2000–2012)
  Han Seung-soo 82   South Korea Saenuri Prime Minister of South Korea (2008–2009)
  Osvaldo Hurtado 80   Ecuador Christian Democratic President of Ecuador (1981–1984)
  Alain Juppé 74   France UMP Prime Minister of France (1995–1997)
  Horst Köhler 76   Germany Christian Democratic President of Germany (2004–2010)
  Alpha Oumar Konaré 73   Mali ADEMA-PASJ President of Mali (1992–2002)
Chairman of the AU Commission (2003–2008)
  Milan Kucan 78   Slovenia
Communist (until 1990)
None (since 1990)
President of Slovenia (1991–2002)
  John Kufuor 80   Ghana NPP President of Ghana (2001–2009)
Chairman of the AU (2007–2008)
  Chandrika Kumaratunga 74   Sri Lanka SLFP President of Sri Lanka (1994–2005)
  Aleksander Kwasniewski 64   Poland None (since 1995) President of Poland (1995–2005)
  Luis Alberto Lacalle 78   Uruguay PN President of Uruguay (1990–1995)
  Ricardo Lagos 81   Chile PPD President of Chile (2000–2006)
  Zlatko Lagumdžija 63   Bosnia and Herzegovina Social Democratic Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina (2001–2002)
  Lee Hong-koo 63   South Korea NKP South Korea Prime Minister of South Korea (1994–1995)
  Thabo Mbeki 77   South Africa ANC President of South Africa (1999–2008)
  Rexhep Meidani 75   Albania Socialist President of Albania (1997–2002)
  Benjamin Mkapa 80   Tanzania CCM President of Tanzania (1995–2005)
  Festus Mogae 80   Botswana BDP President of Botswana (1998–2008)
  Olusegun Obasanjo 82   Nigeria PDP Head of the Federal Military Government of Nigeria (1976–1979)
President of Nigeria (1999–2007)
  Roza Otunbayeva 69   Kyrgyzstan Social Democratic (2007–2010) President of Kyrgyzstan (2010–2011)
  Anand Panyarachun 87   Thailand None Prime Minister of Thailand (1991–1992)
  George Papandreou 67   Greece Socialist Prime Minister of Greece (2009–2011)
  Andrés Pastrana 65   Colombia Conservative President of Colombia (1998–2002)
  P.J. Patterson 84   Jamaica PNP (until 2011) Prime Minister of Jamaica (1992–2006)
  Javier Pérez de Cuéllar 99   Peru UPP Secretary-General of the United Nations (1982–1991)
President of the Council of Ministers of Peru (2000–2001)
  Romano Prodi 80   Italy Democratic President of the European Commission (1999–2004)
President of the Council of Ministers of Italy (1996–1998, 2006–2008)
  Jorge Quiroga 59   Bolivia PODEMOS President of Bolivia (2001–2002)
  Fidel V. Ramos 91   Philippines Lakas President of the Philippines (1992–1998)
  José Manuel Ramos-Horta 69   East Timor None Prime Minister of East Timor (2006–2007)
President of East Timor (2007–2012)
  Poul Nyrup Rasmussen 76   Denmark Social Democrats Prime Minister of Denmark (1993–2001)
  Mary Robinson 75   Ireland None President of Ireland (1990–97)
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (1997–2002)
  José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero 59   Spain Socialist Workers President of the Government of Spain (2004–2011)
  Petre Roman 73   Romania
  SR Romania
FSN (1989–1991) Prime Minister of Romania (1989–1991)
  Jorge Sampaio 80   Portugal Socialist President of Portugal (1996–2006)
  Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada 89   Bolivia MNR President of Bolivia (1993–1997, 2002–2003)
  Julio María Sanguinetti 83   Uruguay PC President of Uruguay (1985–1990, 1995–2000)
  Jennifer Mary Shipley 67   New Zealand National Prime Minister of New Zealand (1997–1999)
  Fuad Siniora 76   Lebanon FM Prime Minister of Lebanon (2005–2009)
  Hanna Suchocka 73   Poland UD Prime Minister of Poland (1992–1993)
  Boris Tadic 61   Serbia NDS-Greens President of Serbia (2004–2012)
  Alejandro Toledo 73   Peru PP President of Peru (2001–2006)
  Martín Torrijos 56   Panama PRD President of Panama (2004–2009)
  Danilo Türk 67   Slovenia None President of Slovenia (2007–2012)
  Cassam Uteem 78   Mauritius MMM President of Mauritius (1992–2002)
  Guy Verhofstadt 66   Belgium VLD Prime Minister of Belgium (1999–2008)
  Vaira Vike-Freiberga 81   Latvia None President of Latvia (1999–2007)
  Ernesto Zedillo 67   Mexico PRI President of Mexico (1994–2000)

Member statisticsEdit

Regional background of members:

Political affiliation of members:

Office held (some members have held both):

List of honorary membersEdit

Name Age Nation Party Office(s) held
  Aung San Suu Kyi 74   Myanmar NLD State Counsellor of Myanmar (2016–present)
  Jimmy Carter 95   United States Democratic President of the United States (1977–81)
  Enrique V. Iglesias 89   Uruguay
(unknown) President of the Inter-American Development Bank (1998–2005)
Secretary General of the Iberoamerican General Secretariat (2005–13)
  Jacques Delors 94   France Socialist President of the European Commission (1985–95)
  Javier Solana 77   Spain Socialist Secretary General of NATO (1995–99) and High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (1999–2009)

List of members of the constituent foundationsEdit

Name Age Nation Party Office(s) held
  Diego Hidalgo 77   Spain (unknown) Founder and President of, and donor to, Fundación para las Relaciones Internacionales y el Diálogo Exterior (FRIDE)
Founding Member and Senior Fellow of the Gorbachev Foundation of North America (GFNA)[3]
  T. Anthony Jones (unknown) (unknown) (unknown) Vice-President and Executive Director of GFNA[4]
  George Matthews (unknown)   United States (unknown) Chairman and co-founder of GFNA[5]
  José Manuel Romero Moreno 79   Spain (unknown) Vice President of FRIDE[6]

List of former members (deceased)Edit

Name Died Nation Party Office(s) held
  Belisario Betancur December 7, 2018(2018-12-07) (aged 95)   Colombia Conservative President of Colombia (1982–1986)
  Wim Kok October 20, 2018(2018-10-20) (aged 80)   Netherlands Labour Prime Minister of the Netherlands (1994–2002)
  Kofi Annan August 18, 2018(2018-08-18) (aged 80)   Ghana None Secretary-General of the United Nations (1997–2006)
  Álvaro Arzú April 27, 2018(2018-04-27) (aged 72)   Guatemala Unionist President of Guatemala (1996–2000)
Mayor of Guatemala City (2004–2018)
  Ruud Lubbers February 14, 2018(2018-02-14) (aged 78)   Netherlands Christian Democratic Prime Minister of the Netherlands (1982–1994)
UN High Commissioner for Refugees (2001–2005)
  Ketumile Masire June 22, 2017(2017-06-22) (aged 91)   Botswana BDP President of Botswana (1980–1998)
  Helmut Kohl 20170616June 16, 2017(2017-06-16) (aged 87)   Germany
  West Germany
Christian Democratic Chancellor of West Germany (1982–1990)
Chancellor of Germany (1990–1998)
  James Mancham 20170108January 8, 2017(2017-01-08) (aged 77)   Seychelles Democratic President of Seychelles (1976–1977)
  Mário Soares 20170107January 7, 2017(2017-01-07) (aged 92)   Portugal Socialist Prime Minister of Portugal (1976–1978, 1983–1985)
President of Portugal (1986–1996)
  António Mascarenhas Monteiro 20160916September 16, 2016(2016-09-16) (aged 72)   Cape Verde MPD President of Cape Verde (1991–2001)
  Abdul-kareem al-Eryani 20151108November 8, 2015(2015-11-08) (aged 81)   Yemen
  North Yemen
GPC Prime Minister of North Yemen (1980–1983)
Prime Minister of Yemen (1998–2001)
  Adolfo Suárez 20140323March 23, 2014(2014-03-23) (aged 81)   Spain
  Estado Español
MN (until 1977)
UCD (1977–82)
President of the Government of Spain (1976–81)
  Tadeusz Mazowiecki 20131028October 28, 2013(2013-10-28) (aged 86)   Poland
  PR Poland
KO "S" (1980–91)
UD (1991–94)
Prime Minister of Poland (1989–91)
  Inder Kumar Gujral 20121130November 30, 2012(2012-11-30) (aged 92)   India Janata Dal Prime Minister of India (1997–98)
  Václav Havel 20111218December 18, 2011(2011-12-18) (aged 75)   Czech Republic
OF (1989–93)
None (1993–2004)
President of Czechoslovakia (1989–92)
President of the Czech Republic (1993–2003)
  Ferenc Mádl 20110529May 29, 2011(2011-05-29) (aged 80)   Hungary None President of Hungary (2000–05)
  Raúl Alfonsín 20090331March 31, 2009(2009-03-31) (aged 82)   Argentina UCR President of Argentina (1983–89)
  Leopoldo Calvo-Sotelo 20080503May 3, 2008(2008-05-03) (aged 82)   Spain UCD President of the Government of Spain (1981–82)
  Lennart Meri 20060314March 14, 2006(2006-03-14) (aged 76)   Estonia
  Soviet Union
Isamaa (since 1992) President of Estonia (1992–2001)
  Valentín Paniagua 20061016October 16, 2006(2006-10-16) (aged 70)   Peru AC President of Peru (2000–01)

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ The count of former Prime Ministers includes the former Chancellor of West Germany and former Chancellor of Austria as well as the former Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina and former Taoiseach of Ireland.
  2. ^ Warsaw Voice Poland Recognizes Kosovo Archived 2010-04-12 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "Diego Hidalgo". Club de Madrid. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  4. ^ "Anthony Jones". Club de Madrid. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  5. ^ "George Matthews". Club de Madrid. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  6. ^ "José Manuel Romero Moreno". Club de Madrid. Retrieved 6 August 2014.

External linksEdit