Ján Figel’

Former European Union FoRB Special Envoy; Member of the IRF Summit Global Leadership Council; Member of the IRFBA International Council of Experts

Ján Figel’ is a former EU commissioner (2004–2009) and deputy prime minister of Slovakia (2010–2012). Prior to these responsibilities, he acted as a chief negotiator for the accession of Slovakia to the EU and state secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He also served as a vice president of the Slovak Parliament (2012–2016). He was the first-ever special envoy for the promotion of freedom of religion or belief outside the EU. This successful pioneering position was adopted by several EU countries that have established similar roles since then. Figeľ has become strongly involved in FoRB advocacy, promotion of interreligious dialogue, religious literacy, and religious social responsibility. He was active in the release of FoRB prisoners in Cuba, Iran, Pakistan, and Sudan. Currently he is a member of the International Council of Experts of the International Religious Freedom and Belief Alliance and a member of the IRF Summit Global Leadership Council.