Bob Last

Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Read biography

22nd February 2021 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Moving On

One of the things I like the least in this job is having to say goodbye to so many good people. Just over three weeks ago I had to bid adieu to our long-serving team leader and unsung Council hero Matt Forman. It’s been a long three weeks since then, and I’ve been awake most […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply

20th January 2021 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

The Next President

I feel a bit sheepish about not doing a blog at the end of the last session. By the time we’d finished in October it really felt like the less said about the non-stop misery fest that was 2020 the better. I’ll put the fact that not a single person mentioned it down to collective […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply

30th July 2020 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Councils Completed

These are such strange days. We still don’t know if this will prove to be a painful but relatively short-lived episode of global distress or if we’re in this for the much longer haul. Will we look back on this as a defining moment of international cooperation to overcome one of the greatest health challenges […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply (1)

19th March 2020 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Corona Council (24 February – 13 March)

I’ve long had a sense of foredboding about the 43rd session of the Human Rights Council. Those of us who’ve been around these parts longer than most tend to measure our life-spans in the number of Council sessions we’ve racked up, as well as years. I worked out some time ago that session 43 would […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply (1)

7th October 2019 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Zombie Wonderland

Council sessions often drive a temporary wedge between delegates and their families. The heavy hours estrange us from our partners and children and conversations tend to become rushed and reduced to topics of basic functional necessity.  So I was slightly thrown when my son wouldn’t let me get out of the door early one morning […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply (1)

23rd September 2019 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Badly Opened Boxes

There are different ways to open boxes of breakfast cereal. When my wife does it, the box looks like it’s been magically opened by a graceful spell – the packaging remains in pristine condition and the re-sealable cardboard tag slides effortlessly into its allotted place. Whenever I do it, it looks like a pack of […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply (1)

25th March 2019 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Fretful Felines at Forty

Last autumn, Pixie – our much loved cat (and subject of a 2015 blog trilogy) – fell seriously ill. After a week in pet hospital, the vets advised that she needed an urgent blood transfusion to survive. Except they didn’t have any cat blood in stock, so they asked if I could round up some […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply (1)

2nd October 2018 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Growing Up

When the US walked out of the Council last session, there were plenty of doom-mongers foretelling the multiple ways in which everything would fall apart, drawing on the Council’s darker moments of its stuttering early years, before the US joined. There may be more testing times ahead, but this was the Council’s most successful session […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply

24th September 2018 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Growing Awkward

I’ve often thought that children make the best negotiators. Kids seem to know better than anyone how to stay focussed on what they want and strike home when defences are down. If you ever need a lesson for succeeding in a multilateral negotiation, I’d recommend spending some time observing supermarket check-out queues on a Saturday […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply

17th September 2018 Geneva, Switzerland

Bob Last

by Bob Last

Deputy Head, UK Mission Political Team

Growing Intolerant

Over the summer, I have grown a little bit more intolerant. Not to family holidays, heatwaves or even World Cup exits, but to all things dairy. In many countries, this wouldn’t be especially problematic, but in Switzerland, I am having to rethink my breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as my usual Council mood-enhancer – […]

Read more on get_the_title | Reply (2)

About Bob Last

Bob Last (OBE) is Deputy Head of the UK Mission Political Team. He worked on human rights in the UK and Uganda before joining the UK Mission to the UN…

Bob Last (OBE) is Deputy Head of the UK Mission Political Team. He worked on human rights in the UK and Uganda before joining the UK Mission to the UN in 2002. His blog hopes shares regular thoughts and experiences, following the work of the Human Rights Council and other UN human rights meetings in Geneva.