Kurd named to top Middle East advisor post in US

Herro Mustafa

Herro Mustafa

Herro Mustafa, a Kurdish refugee raised in the US, has been named Senior Advisor to the Middle East for US Vice President Joe Biden.  Mustafa has an impressive career with the US Foreign Service stretching over a decade.

Mustafa has been a State Department Foreign Service Officer since 1999. Immediately prior to joining the Vice President’s office as a detailee from the State Department, she was Deputy Director of the Afghanistan Office at the State Department. She was previously the Chief-of-Staff for Under Secretary for Political Affairs Bill Burns and an Advisor on the Middle East for former Under Secretary Nicholas Burns.

Herro was Director for Iran and Israeli-Palestinian Affairs at the National Security Council from 2005-2006 and Director for Iraq and Afghanistan from 2004-2005. As part of her Foreign Service career, Herro was the lead Civilian Coordinator in Mosul, Iraq; she reopened the U.S. non-immigrant visa section in Beirut, Lebanon; and she covered human rights, trafficking in persons, and domestic politics in Athens, Greece.

Prior to joining the Foreign Service, Herro was a Senior Editor at the Emirates Center for Strategic Studies and Research in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, where she edited several books and journals. Prior to that, she was an Elections Supervisor in Bosnia with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. Herro grew up in Minot, North Dakota (northern USA) and speaks Arabic, Persian, Kurdish, Greek, and Turkish. She has an undergraduate degree from Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service and a Masters from Princeton University.

Mustafa’s family fled Kurdistan in the 1970s and settled in the US.

She is the subject of the new documentary, “American Herro.”


Vice President Biden announces key staff appointments.  24 March 2009. Thaindian News.


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