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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2708

U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Robert Blake nominated for South Asia Bureau in Washington

Daya Gamage – US National Correspondent Asian Tribune

Washington, D.C. 28 April (Asiantribune.com): White HouseRobert Blake nominated for South Asia Bureau in WashingtonRobert Blake nominated for South Asia Bureau in Washington last Friday announced President Obama’s intention to nominate current U.S. ambassador to Sri Lanka Robert Blake to be the assistant secretary for South Asia in the State Department in Washington.

The official White House communiqué did not include Central Asian Affairs to the portfolio offered to Mr. Blake.

At present Richard Boucher hold both South and Central Asian Affairs as the assistant secretary in this State Department bureau.

When asked about this division of the State Department Bureau the Department spokesman Wood did not have a clear answer at hand but instead said "I’ll take a look and see what – if there’s some discrepancy, I’ll take a look at that."

Ambassador Blake’s previous position was Deputy Chief of Mission in New Delhi often acting for the ambassador who had health problems at that time. With Sri Lanka situation getting more volatile with the imminent demise of the Tamil Tiger outfit and US-India relations getting off the rail Mr. Blake would have been asked to handle only the South Asia division by the secretary of State Clinton. The South Asia-designee will have India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh, a region faced with political turmoil.

Ambassador Blake is a career Foreign Service Officer. He entered the Foreign Service in 1985. He has served at the American Embassies in Tunisia, Algeria, Nigeria and Egypt. He also has held a number of positions at the State Department in Washington. He was Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in New Delhi from 2003 to 2006, before taking up his current assignment as Ambassador to Sri Lanka and Maldives.

Mr. Blake needs to get the confirmation from the U.S. Senate Foreign Affairs Committee.

- Asian Tribune -

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