Distinguished Latvian diplomat, Aina Nagobads-Ābols, has passed away

30.09.2021. 09:06

It is with great sadness that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announces the passing of a distinguished Latvian diplomat, Aina Nagobads-Ābols, in Paris on 29 September 2021, at the age of 101.

To pay tribute to Ms Nagobads-Ābols and her special contribution to the growth and strengthening of the Foreign Service of the restored Latvian state, a book of condolences will be open at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 14.00 to 16.00 on 4 October and from 10.00 to 14.00 on 5 October.

Aina Nagobads-Ābols was born in Rīga, Latvia, on 9 June 1920, into the family of Ernests Nagobads, an educator and fighter for Latvia’s independence. In 1939, after completing her studies at Riga Gymnasium No. 2, Anna Nagobads-Ābols studied medicine at the University of Latvia. In the autumn of 1944, she was evacuated to Germany together with the staff of the Riga University Hospital. In 1949, she graduated from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Tübingen in Germany and married Guntars Abols (19212016). The family lived in Morocco (19541955), then moved to Paris and its suburbs in Le Vésinet.

In March 1990, Aina Nagobads-Ābols was appointed Honorary Consul for Latvia in Paris by Anatols Dinbergs, the Head of Latvia’s diplomatic and consular service. A year later, she was posted as Ambassador to France, Spain and Portugal, and, from 1992 to 2000, she served as Permanent Representative of Latvia to UNESCO. In 1997, Aina Nagobads-Ābols completed her ambassadorial posting, and, in January 2020, she was granted the title of the Representation’s Honorary Counsellor on UNESCO.

Aina Nagobads-Ābols is the recipient of national honours including Latvia’s Order of the Three Stars, 3rd class, France’s Legion of Honour, 1st class, and Portugal’s Grand Cross of the Order of Merit. In 2019, launching a new tradition, Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs bestowed upon Aina Nagobads-Ābols Latvia’s very first lifetime diplomatic achievement award for excellence and distinguished service to her country.

This past summer, the National Library of Latvia presented an exhibition, “A Latvian Woman & Her Century”. In autumn, it will be on display in Paris.