Maître Alioune Blondin Beye was born in 1939 in Bafoulablé, Western Mali. After graduating from school, he studied law and political sciences at the University of Dijon in France. There, he graduated in 1971. He then took up a position as professor of law at the Ecole Nationale d´administration in Bamako and was admitted to the bar. After serving for several years as legal advisor to the Malian government, he was appointed Minister for Youth, Arts, Sport and Culture. From 1978, he supported then President Moussa Traore as Foreign Minister for eight years. Later, in addition to working as a legal adviser in the President’s Office, he also became legal adviser to the African Development Bank and finally became Secretary General of the organisation.
In 1993, he finally accepted the challenge that many found an impossible task: he accepted the post of Special Representative of the UN Secretary General, Boutros Boutros-Ghali, for Angola. As Special Envoy, he was tasked with helping Angola to bring peace to a country that at the time had suffered decades of civil war, which cost the lives of almost half a million people and displaced three million. He participated in Angola’s peace negotiations with decisive energy, intellect and imagination and, partly through his personal will, brought about the Lusaka Protocol, which ended the civil war in 1994. In the three years that followed, his main concern was to build lasting peace and stability in Angola.
Maître Beye was awarded the German Africa Award in 1997 for spending his life fighting for peace, justice and respectable living conditions for the Malian and other peoples. The award was presented by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Klaus Kinkel.
Maître Beye died in an airplane crash in 1998 and left behind his wife and four children.