Catriona Laing

Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

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28th August 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander, visits the Helmand PRT

Danny Alexander, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, flew in to Lashkar Gah on 27 August to see for himself the progress which international forces and the Afghan authorities have made in bringing security, stability and prosperity to Helmand. As holder of the British Government purse-strings it’s important that he satisfies himself with the impact the […]

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31st July 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

Helmand Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) Hosts Last Iftar Dinner Before Draw Down

The PRT hosted a traditional ‘Iftar’ dinner recently which was attended by a diverse mix of 50 local Afghan dignitaries, including Provincial Governor Naeem, district governors, government officials, security leaders, mullahs and ulema, as well as international officials and staff from the PRT and our military colleagues (ISAF). The mixture of Afghan, PRT and ISAF […]

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1st July 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

Prime Minister Cameron Praises the Achievements of Staff at the Helmand Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT)

David Cameron visited the Helmand PRT on Saturday 29th June as part of a grueling three country tour also taking in Pakistan and Kazakhstan. His day in Afghanistan started at 06.30 at Camp Bastion, took in a Forward Operating Base just outside Lashkar Gah, a visit to Main Operating Base Lashkar Gar (where the PRT […]

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23rd June 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

FCO Human Resources Director visits Helmand PRT

I recently visited the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Lashkar Gah. As the Foreign Office HR Director, I often feel that I need to get out more. It’s easy to get stuck behind my desk in London, thinking about our global workforce (over 14,000 staff in 270 posts around the world). But I get a fresh perspective by getting out and talking to our staff about what’s on their minds.

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22nd June 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

Update: Women Register to Vote in Municipal Advisory Board Elections

Following on from my previous blog “A Generational Change Plays Out as Women in Helmand Register to Vote in Local Elections” I am delighted to report the success of the 15 June Municipal Advisory Board (MAB) election. 525 women voted representing the largest turn out of female voters in a local election in Helmand. 4 […]

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2nd June 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

British Ambassador Visits Nad-e Ali District

British Ambassador meets District Governor of Nad-e Ali

I accompanied my Ambassador Sir Richard Stagg on a visit to Nad-e Ali District in Helmand Province on Thursday 30th May. Arriving at Forward Operating Base Shawqat we were warmly welcomed by the Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Neil Unsworth OBE and staff of 2nd Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, who delivered a very positive […]

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20th May 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

Huge support for Helmand community elections

Residents of a key district in Afghanistan have participated in huge numbers as registration for the District Community Council (DCC) elections began yesterday. More than 2000 people from Nad-e Ali in Helmand province attended a district Shura (meeting) led by Provincial Governor Naeem Baluch and supported by community leaders. The District Governor, Mohammad Ibrahm, opened […]

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13th May 2013 Zimbabwe

Catriona Laing

by Catriona Laing

British Ambassador to Zimbabwe

Prime Minister of Denmark visits Helmand PRT

The Prime Minister of Denmark, Helle Thorning-Schmidt has visited Helmand Provincial Reconstruction Team in Lashkar Gah for an update on progress. The visit was the premier’s second since she took office in 2011. The Prime Minister expressed her gratitude and pride of the Danish military and civilian staff in Helmand. She stressed that Denmark will […]

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About Catriona Laing

I was born in Cardiff but brought up in South London. I studied
economics and joined the civil service through the Government Economic
Service after 2.5 years working for the Government of Botswana as an
infrastructure economist.
I was posted to Kenya to advise on the government’s development
programmes in East Africa, and then seconded to the United Nations
Mission in Somalia heading the UN Development Office.
I spent five years working for Prime Minister Tony Blair in his
strategy unit, and was later posted to head the DFID office in Sudan
running a £116 million programme and addressing the drivers of conflict.
Most recently I have been working for the Ministry of Justice to
establish the new international function with responsibility for
European and international justice.
I live with my partner – Clive Bates and our Sudanese dog – in
Balham. My hobbies are yoga, dog and mountain walking and cooking.

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