Ulla Kourany

Ms. Kourany has a broad knowledge base and interest in human rights and human security issues. After starting her career with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and serving in various African countries for 10 years, she joined the Canadian Foreign Service and worked on a variety of issues related to international human rights law such as the Convention on the Rights of the Child and UN Security Council Resolutions 1662 and 1882 on children and armed conflict.

She has led Canada’s efforts to expand the definition of children to include other children affected by conflict. She has represented Canada internationally at the UN General Assembly, the UN Peacebuilding Commission and the UN Human Rights Council. She was Canada’s chief negotiator and chair of the Kimberly Process Certification Scheme reform committee for conflict diamonds and other initiatives related to extractive industry governance issues.
 governance issues in the extractive industries.

During her career, she also served as Special Assistant to the Prime Minister’s Personal Representative for the G8 in Africa and spearheaded the implementation of the 2002 Kananaskis Agreement under the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) and the African Union. Prior to her retirement from the public service in 2019, Ms. Kourany served as head of the Canadian Anti-Daesh and Syria-Iraq Crisis Coordination Secretariat.

Ms. Kourany is fluent in French, English, Spanish and Arabic.