Ambassador Dr. Günther Altenburg is the NATO Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs and Security Policy. He is responsible for advising the Secretary General of NATO on political issues affecting the security of the Alliance, including relations with non-NATO countries and other international organisations, chairing the meetings of Senior Political Advisers of the Allied Delegations, and directing the Political Affairs Division of the NATO International Staff.
Ambassador Altenburg has a long and distinguished record of public service mainly in the Foreign Ministry of the Federal Republic of Germany. He has focused his career on multilateral security policy issues, particularly Germany’s policy towards NATO, the European Union, the OSCE and the United Nations.
Before joining NATO, he was Head of the Department for Global Issues and the United Nations of the German Foreign Ministry (1998-2001); First Director and Head of the Analysis and Assessment Division of the Federal Intelligence Service, Munich (1997-1998); Head of the UN-Policy Division in the Federal Foreign Office (1992-1997); Deputy Head of the Delegation of the Federal Republic of Germany at the CSCE-Conferences in Vienna and Helsinki (1988-1992).
Ambassador Altenburg began his career in 1972 as Head of the Economics Section at the German Embassy in La Paz, Bolivia. Subsequently, he worked in the Press Section of the Federal Foreign Office (1976-1980), became Permanent Deputy of the Ambassador and Chargé d’affaires at the German Embassy in Beirut (1980-1983), Deputy Head of Division for Disarmament and Arms Control in the United Nations (1983-1984), Deputy Head of Division for the CSCE (1984-1988) in the Federal Foreign Office.
Ambassador Altenburg received his undergraduate law degree and his PhD (Law) from Bonn University. He also studied French language at the Lausanne University, Switzerland, and public administration at the École Nationale d’Administration, Paris, France.