Sir John Killick GCMG (18 November 1919 – 12 February 2004) was a British diplomat who was ambassador in Moscow at a difficult time, later ambassador to NATO.
- Sir John Killick, successively Ambassador to the Soviet Union and to Nato, was a distinguished member of that generation of British diplomats who joined the Foreign Office straight from long and varied wartime service in the Armed Forces. As such his whole active life was shaped by the need to confront dictators: Hitler during the war and a succession of Soviet leaders during the uneasy peace that followed.
— The Times, 19 February 2004
John Edward Killick was educated at Latymer Upper School, University College, London, and Bonn University. He served in the British Army during World War II, first in the Suffolk Regiment, and later in the 1st Airborne Division in which he commanded the 89th Field Security Section (Intelligence Corps) at Arnhem. He was captured by the Germans, and after release in 1945 he commanded the intelligence corps unit at Siegen.
Kilick joined the Foreign Office in 1946 and served with the Allied High Commission in Germany 1948–51, at Berlin, Frankfurt and Bonn. He was private secretary to the Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Foreign Office 1951–54, served at the embassy in Addis Ababa 1954–57, then attended the Canadian National Defence College (then located with the Canadian Land Forces Command and Staff College) 1957–58. He served in the Western European department at the Foreign Office 1958–62, attended the Imperial Defence College 1962–63, then was Head of Chancery at the embassy in Washington, D.C., 1963–68, and Assistant Under-Secretary at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) 1968–71.
Killick was appointed Ambassador at Moscow in September 1971. Shortly after he arrived, the British government expelled 90 Russian intelligence officers, and Killick had to deal with the difficult Anglo-Soviet relations that followed. He returned to London 1973–75 as deputy to the Permanent Under-Secretary at the FCO, Sir Thomas Brimelow, and also Britain's Permanent Representative on the Council of the Western European Union. He was Permanent Representative to the North Atlantic Council (the governing body of NATO) 1975–79.
- KILLICK, Sir John (Edward), Who Was Who, A & C Black, 1920–2007; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2012
- "Killick, Sir John Edward". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (online ed.). Oxford University Press. Digital object identifier:10.1093/ref:odnb/93465. (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
- Obituary: Sir John Killick: High-flying envoy at the heart of Britain's cold-war diplomacy, The Guardian, 16 February 2004
- Sir John Killick (obituary), The Telegraph, London, 14 February 2004
- Sir John Killick: Ambassador to the Soviet Union whose cool nerves were tested in Cold War diplomatic tit-for-tat, The Times, London, 19 February 2004
- Obituary: Sir John Killick, 1919 - 2004, Field Security Officer, 89 (Parachute) Field Security Section
- Interview with Sir John Killick, British Diplomatic Oral History Programme, Churchill College, Cambridge, 2002
Sir Duncan Wilson
|Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary at Moscow|
| Succeeded by|
Sir Terence Garvey
Sir Edward Peck
|Permanent Representative to the North Atlantic Council|
| Succeeded by|
Sir Clive Rose
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