Joseph Luns

Joseph Antoine Marie Hubert Luns ( born August 28, 1911 in Rotterdam, † July 17, 2002 in Brussels) was a Dutch politician, diplomat, Foreign Minister 1952-1971 and 1971-1984 Secretary General of NATO.


He attended schools in Amsterdam and Brussels. At the age of 20 he went as a sailor for one year Koninklijke Marine ( Dutch Navy ).

From 1933 to 1936 he was a member of the NSB, the National Socialist Party, although Catholics were forbidden by the bishops. In 1979 its membership was revealed, and Luns forced his brother to say that this 've signed him without his knowledge.

In 1937 he completed his studies in law at the University of Leiden and the University of Amsterdam, then he was still studying at the London School of Economics and the Friedrich -Wilhelms -Universität zu Berlin, before he went into foreign policy. During the Second World War, he was Ambassador of the Netherlands in Switzerland, Portugal and the United Kingdom.

In 1949 he went to 1952 as a UN Ambassador of the Netherlands to New York. In the following years, he was (as a member of the Catholic party ) first together with Johan Willem Beijen, Foreign Minister in various governments. In 1957, he signed the Treaties of Rome for his country.

In 1971 he took the post of NATO Secretary General Manlio Brosio, a position he held until 1984. He was followed by Peter Carington, 6th Baron Carrington.

Awards, among others

  • Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour (1954 )
  • Charlemagne Prize of Aachen (1967 )
  • Gustav -Stresemann- Medal ( 1968)
  • Order of the Companions of Honour (1971 )
  • Joseph Bech Price ( 1979)
  • Grand Cross of the Order of Infante Dom Henrique (1984 )
  • Presidential Medal of Freedom ( 1984)
  • Atatürk Peace Prize (1986 )