News / USA

Envoy Post to Remain After Holbrooke's Death

President Barack Obama is introduced by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at a holiday reception for international diplomats at the State Department in Washington, where they praised the work of the late Amb. Richard Holbrooke, Dec 13, 2010
President Barack Obama is introduced by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton at a holiday reception for international diplomats at the State Department in Washington, where they praised the work of the late Amb. Richard Holbrooke, Dec 13, 2010

The State Department said Tuesday the post of U.S. envoy for Pakistan and Afghanistan will be continued following the death of the job's first occupant, Richard Holbrooke. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton hailed Holbrooke as an indispensable colleague.

Obama administration officials describe Holbrooke, a 40-year diplomatic veteran, as virtually irreplaceable. They say the structure he built, though, as the first U.S. envoy for Pakistan and Afghanistan will remain in place, and that the post he pioneered two years ago will remain.

Holbrooke's deputy, senior diplomat Frank Ruggiero, has assumed the late envoy's duties on an acting basis, and took his place Tuesday at key White House meetings capping the Obama administration's soon-to-be-completed Afghan policy review.

A senior State Department official told reporters  a replacement for Holbrooke will named in due course, and that Ruggiero, a former senior official in the department's bureau of political-military affairs, cannot be excluded as a possible successor.

Tributes to Holbrooke continue to flow in from U.S. political figures and officials around the world. President Barack Obama called him a "unique figure" and a "true giant of American foreign policy."

In her first public remarks Tuesday on Holbrooke's death, Clinton called him a valued friend, a trusted mentor and an indispensable colleague to generations of U.S. diplomats.

"It has been remarkable to see the tributes coming in from around the world," said Clinton. "The word that keeps being said over and over again is 'statesman.' It's a word that we don't use much anymore. But Richard embodied it. A man who loved our country and dedicated his life to serving not only our people, but the cause of peace, a diplomat who used every tool in the toolbox and someone who accomplished so much on behalf of so many."

Holbrooke  suffered a ruptured aorta during a meeting with Clinton last Friday and died late Monday at a hospital a few blocks from the State Department.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that Holbrooke's last words, to doctors preparing him for surgery late Friday, were that "you've got to stop this war in Afghanistan."

State Department Spokesman P.J. Crowley addressed the issue at a news briefing, saying Holbrooke's comments were part of a light-hearted exchange with doctors attending him as opposed to criticism of U.S. war policy.

"At one point, the medical team said you've got to relax," said Crowley. "And Richard said: 'I can't relax, I'm worried about Afghanistan and Pakistan.' And then after some additional exchanges, the medical team finally said: 'We'll try to fix this challenge while you're undergoing surgery.' And he [Holbrooke] said: 'Yeah. See if you can take care of that, including ending the war.'"

Crowley said his version of the exchange was reconstructed from accounts of several people present at Holbrooke's bedside, and reflected the late envoy's "singular focus"  on bringing U.S. efforts in the region to a successful conclusion.


You May Like

Ferguson Grand Jury Decision Unlikely Before Monday

Tension builds over possible indictment of white police officer in shooting death of black teen More

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

President Poroshenko compares Soviet-era ‘genocide’ to current Russian-backed rebels’ fight in east More

S. Philippines Convictions Elusive 5 Years After Election-related Killings

Officials vowed to deliver justice as the nation marked the anniversary of the country's worst political massacre that left 58 dead, more than half media More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
New Skateboard Defies Gravityi
X
November 21, 2014 5:07 AM
A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.
Video

Video Tensions Build on Korean Peninsula Amid Military Drills

It has been another tense week on the Korean peninsula as Pyongyang threatened to again test nuclear weapons while the U.S. and South Korean forces held joint military exercises in a show of force. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from the Kunsan Air Base in South Korea.
Video

Video Mama Sarah Obama Honored at UN Women’s Entrepreneurship Day

President Barack Obama's step-grandmother is in the United States to raise money to build a $12 million school and hospital center in Kogelo, Kenya, the birthplace of the president's father, Barack Obama, Sr. She was honored for her decades of work to aid poor Kenyans at a Women's Entrepreneurship Day at the United Nations.
Video

Video Gay Evangelicals Argue That Bible Does Not Condemn Homosexuality

More than 30 U.S. states now recognize same-sex marriages, and an increasing number of mainline American churches are blessing them. But evangelical church members- which account for around 30 percent of the U.S. adult population - believe the Bible unequivocally condemns homosexuality. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender evangelicals are coming out. Backed by a prominent evangelical scholar, they argue that the traditional reading of the bible is wrong.
Video

Video Ebola Economic Toll Stirs W. Africa Food Security Concerns

The World Bank said Wednesday that it expects the economic impact of the Ebola outbreak on the sub-Saharan economy to cost somewhere betweenf $3 billion to $4 billion - well below a previously-outlined worst-case scenario of $32 billion. Some economists, however, paint a gloomier picture - warning that the disruption to regional markets and trading is considerable. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Mexico Protests Escalate Over Disappearances

Protests in Mexico over 43 students missing since September continue to escalate, reflecting growing anger among Mexicans about a political system they view as corrupt, and increasingly tainted by the drug trade. Mounting outrage over the disappearances is now focused on the government of President Enrique Pena Nieto, accused of not doing enough to end insecurity in the country. More from VOA's Victoria Macchi.
Video

Video US Senate Votes Down Controversial Oil Pipeline - For Now

The U.S. Senate has rejected construction of a controversial pipeline to transport Canadian oil to American refineries. The $5 billion project still could be approved next year, but it faces a possible veto by President Barack Obama. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the pipeline has exposed deep divisions in Congress about America’s energy future.
Video

Video Can Minsk Cease-fire Agreement Hold?

Growing tensions between government troops and separatists in eastern Ukraine further threaten a cease-fire agreement reached two months ago in the Belarusian capital of Minsk. Critics of U.S. policy in Ukraine say it is time the Obama administration gives up on that much-violated cease-fire and moves toward a new deal with Russia. VOA's Scott Stearns has more.
Video

Video Chaos, Abuse Defy Solution in Libya

The political and security crisis in Libya is deepening, with competing governments and, according to Amnesty International, widespread human rights violations committed with impunity. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video US Hosts Record 866,000 Foreign Students

Close to 900,000 international students are studying at American universities and colleges, more than ever before. About half of them come from Asia, mostly China. The United States hosts more foreign students than any other country in the world, and its foreign student population is steadily growing. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Ferguson Church Grapples with Race Relations

Many white residents of Ferguson, Missouri, say they chose to live there because of the American Midwest community's diversity. So, they were shocked when a white police officer killed an unarmed black teenager in August – and shaken by the resulting protests and violence. Some local churches are leading conversations on how to go forward. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports.

All About America

AppleAndroid