Araya Desta was appointed Ambassador to the United Nations on December 14, 2005.
Desta, with some 13 years of experience in foreign affairs and 11 years of relief work, was his country’s ambassador to the Nordic countries with residence in Stockholm, Sweden, from 2002 until his appointment. Prior to that, from 1994 to 2001, he was Minister Counsellor of Eritrea’s Embassy in Beijing, China. From 1993 to 1994, he served as First Secretary and Consul at the Consulate of Eritrea in Ottawa, Canada.
Between 1982 and 1991, Desta served on the Board of the Eritrean Relief Association in Khartoum, Sudan. From 1982 to 1993, he was Executive Director and Chair of the Eritrean Relief Association-Canada Board of Directors in Ottawa.
Desta worked as a Computer Programmer for the Amoco Canada Petroleum Company in Calgary from 1980 to 1982. From 1972 to 1976, he was Head of the Meteorological Application Section in the Ethiopian Meteorological Services in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and from 1963 to 1972, he served as Weather Forecaster for the Civil Aviation Administration in Asmara, Eritrea.
Desta received a Diploma in Weather Forecasting from the Stanmore Meteorological Training Centre in London in 1969. He earned a BS degree in mathematics at the University of Nairobi, Kenya in 1980, and an MA in atmospheric physics at the University of Toronto, Canada, in 1985.
He was born in 1945 in Senafe, Eritrea, and is married with five children.
Permanent Mission of Eritrea to the United Nations
800 2nd Ave., 18th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Phone: (212) 687-3390
Fax: (212) 687-3138