Pavlo Klimkin

Pavlo Anatoliyovych Klimkin (Ukrainian: Павло Анатолійович Клімкін; born 25 December 1967) is a Ukrainian diplomat who from 19 June 2014 until 29 August 2019 served as Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.[2] A Moscow-educated physicist,[3][1] he has worked in the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry since 1993, with positions including director of the department for the European Union, as well as deputy foreign minister in the First Azarov Government,[4][5] where he played a central role in negotiating the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement.[5][6]

Pavlo Klimkin
Павло Клімкін
Pavlo Klimkin.jpg
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
19 June 2014 – 29 August 2019
Prime MinisterArseniy Yatsenyuk
Volodymyr Groysman
Preceded byAndrii Deshchytsia (Acting)
Succeeded byVadym Prystaiko[1]
Ambassador to Germany
In office
22 June 2012 – 19 June 2014
Preceded byNatalia Zarudna
Succeeded byAndriy Melnyk
Personal details
Born (1967-12-25) 25 December 1967 (age 52)
Political partyIndependent
Spouse(s)Natalia Klimkina
Children2 sons
Alma materMoscow Institute of Physics and Technology

Klimkin is also a former (2012–2014) Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Ukraine to Germany.

Early life, educationEdit

Pavlo Klimkin was born on 25 December 1967[4] in the city of Kursk in Russia (then the Soviet Union); but spent only the first two months of his life there.[5][7][8] Beyond Russian and Ukrainian, Klimkin is fluent in English and German[4] and has a basic knowledge of French and Spanish.[9] In 1991 Klimkin graduated from the department of aerophysics and space research at Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology,[2] with a specialist degree in physics and mathematics.[10] Klimkin moved to Ukraine at the age of 24.[10] He was then a research officer from 1991 to 1993[4] at the E. O. Paton Electric Welding Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.[2]

Political careerEdit

Early positionsEdit

In 1993 Klimkin started his career at the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, where he would hold a variety of positions.[5] Early on he served as an attaché and second secretary in the department of military control and disarmament,[2] also working in the departments involved with German diplomacy, nuclear and energy security, and economics.[11] By 1997 he was working directly for the future Vice Prime Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko, who would later appoint Klimkin as his deputy minister.[11]

Klimkin was appointed Minister-Counselor of the Ukrainian Embassy in the United Kingdom in 2004, a position he held until 2008.[2] In March 2008 he was named the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry's director for their European Union department.[4][5]

On 21 April 2010 he became Deputy Foreign Minister in the First Azarov Government of Ukraine.[4][5] As deputy Klimkin played a central role in negotiating the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement, particularly in its early stages in 2012.[5][6] According to, during those years Klimkin was "the face of European integration of Ukraine," as he led a delegation of negotiators with the EU. According to Ukrayinska Pravda, the rejection of European integration with Ukraine in November 2013 was "a personal disappointment to Klimkin, who dedicated many months of his life to [the] issue."[11]

Ambassador to GermanyEdit

He served as both Deputy Foreign Minister and Chief of Staff of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry until 22 June 2012, when he was appointed Ambassador of Ukraine to Germany.[2] As ambassador he has been influential in a number of international negotiations; in early June 2014, that included talks to stop the fighting in eastern Ukraine, when he met with Heidi Tagliavini of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and the Russian Ambassador to Ukraine, Mikhail Zurabov.[12] According to AFP news agency, "The talks have since produced a peace initiative that includes Poroshenko's ceasefire proposal and the introduction of a new constitution that gives broader rights to Ukraine's regions - a key Moscow demand."[6]

Minister of Foreign AffairsEdit

Klimkin meeting Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, 28 May 2016
Klimkin with U.S. President Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in Washington D.C., 20 June 2017

In early June 2014, Klimkin's candidacy for the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine was proposed by Petro Poroshenko, the recently appointed Ukrainian President.[5] On 19 June 2014, 335 MPs of the Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine's parliament) voted for his appointment.[2] This made his approval unanimous,[6] excluding the 35-member faction "Freedom," which didn't vote entirely.[13] Klimkin was sworn in that day.[2]

His appointment was met with voiced approval by academics such as Hryhoriy Nemyria,[9] and that day Klimkin was congratulated by phone by foreign ministers such as Laurent Fabius of France, John Baird of Canada, and Frank-Walter Steinmeier of Germany.[14] He also met with the OSCE chairman, Heidi Tagliavini.[14]

Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister, Grigory Karasin, stated on 19 June that "we wish the new minister success and are ready for contact with him,"[6] also stating that Klimkin is known in their department as a "skilled diplomat."[15] The following day, Klimkin and the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, discussed "measures to resolve Ukraine's crisis" on the phone, focusing on Poroshenko's peace plan and controlling the Ukrainian border.[16]

Policies as minister

According to the AFP news agency, Klimkin's appointment "is seen as a step toward better [Ukrainian] relations with Russia."[6] Also, according to NBC, Klimkin is "Committed to European integration [with Ukraine and] he has played a key role in negotiating the association and free trade agreements with the European Union, which Ukraine is expected to sign later [in June 2014]."[3]

On 29 Augustus 2019 Vadym Prystaiko replaced Klimkin as Foreign Minister of Ukraine.[1]

Personal lifeEdit

Klimkin was married to a fellow diplomat, Natalia, and has two sons.[4][11] Natalia Klimkin holds the post of first secretary of the Embassy of Ukraine in the Netherlands and is responsible for policy issues and culture.[11]

His second wife is Maryna Mykhaylenko, the daughter of a Russian Major General Yury Mykhaylenko.[17][18]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Parliament appoints Klimkin as Ukrainian foreign minister, Interfax-Ukraine (19 June 2014)
  3. ^ a b "Ukrainian parliament approves Pavlo Klimkin as foreign minister". NBC News. Reuters. June 19, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Mr. Pavlo Klimkin - Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, European Parliament
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h Ambassador to Germany Klimkin may become Ukraine's foreign minister, Ukrinform (19 June 2014)
  6. ^ a b c d e f Ukraine president gets parliament boost for peace plan, AFP news agency (19 June 2014)
  7. ^ Klimkin: Russia trying to force renegotiation of Minsk deals, Kyiv Post (18 January 2015)
  8. ^ A History of Ukraine: The Land and Its Peoples by Paul Robert Magocsi, University of Toronto Press, 2010, ISBN 1442610212 (page 563/564 & 722/723)
  9. ^ a b "European integration led Klimkin MFA. Dossier". BBC: Ukraine. June 19, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  10. ^ a b (in Russian)/(website has automatic Google Translate option) Short bio, LIGA
  11. ^ a b c d e (in Ukrainian) Team Poroshenko. The first appointment, Ukrayinska Pravda (19 June 2014) (In Ukrainian)
  12. ^ "Ceasefire must be ensured in eastern Ukraine this coming week - Poroshenko Source: Russia Beyond the Headlines". Russia Beyond the Headlines. Interfax. June 8, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  13. ^ "Foreign departments manage Pavel Klimkin". Gazeta: Ukraine. June 19, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  14. ^ a b "Press Releases about Klimkin". Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. June 19, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  15. ^ "Russia is ready to work with KLIMKIN". Gazeta. June 19, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  16. ^ "Top Russian and Ukrainian diplomats discuss Ukraine crisis settlement". Kyiv Post. Interfax-Ukraine. June 20, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-19.
  17. ^ "Media: Father-in-law Klimkin received the medal for the annexation of Crimea". Ukrop News 24. April 8, 2016.
  18. ^ "Why ethnopolitics doesn't work in Ukraine". al-Jazeera. 9 April 2019.

External linksEdit

Political offices
Preceded by
Andrii Deshchytsia
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Vadym Prystaiko