It is with deep sadness that I announce that Australia’s former High Commissioner to Mauritius, Seychelles and Madagascar, Sandra Vegting, passed away recently after a brief battle with illness.

In particular I extend my deepest condolences to her family.

A long-term DFAT officer, Sandra served her country for 27 years with great loyalty, wisdom and a famously dry wit.

With her passion and intellect, Sandra was an exemplary advocate for Australia through her mastery of her chosen trade. Sandra will be missed by many in the foreign affairs community in Australia and by those she helped make friends of Australia around the world.

Sandra had postings in Athens, Cairo and Brussels and was High Commissioner in Mauritius from 2011 until 2014. She also served as an advisor to then Foreign Minister Downer for three years from 1999, as well as making a long term contribution to the international dimensions of human rights and indigenous issues.

With recent events, it is fitting that we also remember those who advance Australia’s interests in every corner of the globe, and faithfully serve Australians whenever and wherever they face tragedy around the world.

Australia’s diplomacy is poorer for Sandra Vegting’s early passing. Sandra was 51 years old.

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