Christoph Bierwirth

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
Tel: (37410) 58 48 92
Fax: (37410) 54 59 35

Mr. Christoph Bierwirth took up is assignment as the Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Armenia as of 1 September 2013.

Following his Matura (Abitur) obtained at Frankfurt/Main, Mr. Bierwirth studied law, history and political sciences at the J.W Goethe University Frankfurt, the University of Regensburg and the University of Colorado, Boulder, USA.

Following the conclusion of his studies in 1982, passing the initial lawyer state examination (Erstes juristisches Staatsexamen), he underwent post graduate law training in Regensburg and Speyer (Germany) and in Edmonton (Canada) and passed the second lawyer State examination (Zweites juristisches Staatsexamen) in 1986 qualifying him to serve as a judge.

Prior to his arrival in Armenia, Mr. Bierwirth served as Senior Protection Officer and subsequently Deputy Representative in Tbilisi, Georgia. He was responsible for offering UNHCR’s advice in the development of a comprehensive protection response to displacement challenges faced by Georgia and involved in the development of an IDP action plan and drafting a new law on refugee and humanitarian status. Mr. Bierwirth was also responsible,  as the Head of Operations, for UNHCR's humanitarian response during and following the August 2008 conflict. Moreover, he was one of the UNHCR participants in the Geneva international discussions bringing together participants from Georgia, the Russian Federation, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, and the United States of America under the moderation of the European Union, the OSCE and the United Nations.

From 2003 until 2007, Mr. Bierwirth worked at UNHCR Headquarters in Geneva, serving in the Division of International Protection as Senior Liaison Officer (Human Rights), where he represented UNHCR in the newly created Human Rights Council and served as interface between UNHCR and the human rights treaty bodies.

Earlier in his carrier, Mr. Bierwirth served as Refugee Law Training Coordinator for Eastern Europe, as Protection and Senior Protection Officer at the UNHCR Representation in Kyiv, Ukraine, where he was engaged in building-up the Ukrainian asylum system as well as in the design of mechanisms serving prevention and reduction of statelessness among returning formally deported people (e.g. Crimean Tatars). Mr Bierwirth started his career with UNHCR as Legal consultant, Associate Legal Officer and subsequently Training Officer at UNHCR in Germany,
serving at Bonn and Zirndorf. Earlier he was teaching and researching at the University of Regensburg.

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