Baz, Osama Al- (1931–)

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BAZ, OSAMA AL- (1931–)

Egyptian political figure, born in Cairo. With law degrees from the University of Cairo and Harvard, Osama al-Baz became a public prosecutor in 1953. Two years later he joined the Egyptian ministry of foreign affairs. In 1958 he became director of the cabinet of Sami Sharaf, who was responsible for the security of then-President Gamal Abdel Nasser. In March 1975, while Husni Mubarak was vice president, he was named director of the cabinet of the foreign minister, and then first undersecretary of state in the foreign ministry. In November 1977, as a member of the presidential cabinet, he was director of political affairs. In October 1981, after Mubarak came to power, al-Baz became one of the closest advisors of the new Egyptian head of state. In 1983, he headed the Egyptian delegation to the United Nations. In this capacity, al-Baz participated in numerous negotiations touching on sensitive issues, such as the Palestinian question, Sudan, and Islamic terrorism. In August 2001, during the intensification of the Intifada in the Occupied Territories, he traveled to Washington to discuss possible ways of restarting the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, which had been stalled for several months.

SEE ALSO Aqsa Intifada, al-;Mubarak, Husni;Nasser, Gamal Abdel.