Washington, D.C. — The Center for American Progress announced today that Uzra Zeya is joining the organization’s National Security and International Policy team as a senior fellow. At CAP, Zeya will focus on democracy and human rights.
Zeya is a renowned advocate for policy and people, with more than two decades of diplomatic experience in the Near East, South Asia, Europe, human rights, and multilateral affairs. She most recently served as the chargé d’affaires and deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Paris from 2014 to 2017.
“Uzra will be a tremendous strategic asset to CAP’s National Security team,” said Kelly Magsamen, vice president for National Security and International Policy at CAP. “She brings more than two decades of diplomatic experience in advocacy for global human rights and democracy assistance and has led U.S. engagement in Europe, the Middle East, and South Asia.”
Zeya previously served as acting assistant secretary and principal deputy assistant secretary in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor from 2012 to 2014. She oversaw about $400 million in global human rights and democracy assistance and advocated for universal human rights, including freedom of religion, expression, and assembly. As acting assistant secretary, she led U.S. human rights dialogues with China, Egypt, and Bahrain, among others, and launched a new public-private partnership to counter gender-based violence globally.
Zeya joined the Foreign Service in 1990 and served in New Delhi; Muscat, Oman; Damascus, Syria; Cairo; and Kingston, Jamaica. As chief of staff to the deputy secretary of state from 2011 to 2012, she helped shape the U.S. response to the Arab Spring and deepened U.S. engagement with emerging powers. She also served as deputy executive secretary to the secretary of state, as director of the executive secretariat staff, and as U.N. General Assembly coordinator.
She is the recipient of the Légion d’honneur, France’s highest civilian honor. She is a graduate of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, and she speaks French, Arabic, and Spanish.
For more information, please contact Sam Hananel at email@example.com or 202.478.6327.