Former UK envoy to Turkey named as new head of MI6

Former UK envoy to Turkey named as new head of MI6

Former UK envoy to Turkey named as new head of MI6

A former British ambassador to Turkey has been appointed to the helm of the government's secret intelligence service, MI6, on July 29. 

Richard Moore, a political director at the Foreign Office, will take over his new post in the Fall.

He served as U.K. envoy to Ankara between January 2014 and December 2017.

Moore will succeed Sir Alex Younger, who has been chief of the spy agency for the past six years.

Moore was Director for Europe, Latin America and Globalisation from 2010 to 2012 and Director for Programmes and Change from 2008 to 2010.

He has had postings in Vietnam, Turkey (1990-1992), Pakistan and Malaysia.

Prior to becoming a diplomat, Moore worked for MI6 "where he undertook a range of roles across the Service both in the U.K. and overseas," according to his official profile.

"I am pleased and honored to be asked to return to lead my Service," Moore said in a statement.

"SIS plays a vital role... in keeping the British people safe and promoting UK interests overseas."

Younger identified cyber-security as a top priority for Britain during his term, describing the internet as "an existential threat" to intelligence work in a rare public address in 2016.

He has also raised concern about the safety of China’s private telecoms giant Huawei, which Britain this month decided to phase out of its 5G network.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said Younger "carefully and effectively guided the service during a time of increased and more diverse threats."

Moore’s brief official biography says he was born in Libya and is married with two children.

"Outside of work, Richard’s interests include playing golf and watching cricket and rugby," says the biography.

"He speaks fluent Turkish."

It does not give his age.