Sunday, February 28, 2021

Senate confirms Linda Thomas-Greenfield as UN ambassador

WASHINGTON (AP) — Linda Thomas-Greenfield was confirmed as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations on Tuesday, a victory for the Biden administration because it seeks to reengage with the world physique after 4 years of President Donald Trump’s “America First” posture left the U.S. remoted internationally.

Senators voted 78-20 to substantiate Thomas-Greenfield to the submit, which will likely be a Cupboard-level place.

Thomas-Greenfield, a retired 35-year veteran of the overseas service who resigned throughout the Trump administration, would be the third African American, and the second African American girl, to carry the job. Her affirmation was hailed by Democrats and advocates of the United Nations, who had lamented the Trump administration’s unilateral strategy to worldwide affairs.

“This affirmation sends a message that the USA is again and that our overseas service is again,” mentioned Rep. Karen Bass, D-Calif., who chairs a Home International Affairs subcommittee on Africa, international well being and international human rights. “We as a rustic and as a world are safer with Linda Thomas-Greenfield serving as the USA ambassador to the United Nations.”

“We are able to depend on Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield to work with worldwide companions to confront our collective challenges head on, and play an lively function in making certain the U.N. evolves with the calls for of our period as an important discussion board for collective problem-solving and catalyst for international progress,” mentioned Elizabeth Cousens, president of the United Nations Basis, a personal group that helps the world physique’s endeavors. “Hers is the management America wants on the UN at this essential second for the U.S. and world.”

Republicans who opposed her mentioned she was comfortable on China and wouldn’t arise for U.S. ideas on the United Nations. Thomas-Greenfield had rejected these considerations throughout her affirmation listening to, telling senators {that a} 2019 speech she gave to the Chinese language-funded Confucius Institute had been a mistake and was not supposed to be an endorsement of Chinese language authorities insurance policies.

Within the speech, she had praised China’s $1 trillion Belt and Street international infrastructure program in Africa and referred to as for “a win-win-win scenario” the place the U.S. and China would promote good governance and the rule of regulation.

She advised senators that China is a strategic adversary and that “their actions threaten our safety, they threaten our values and so they threaten our lifestyle, and they’re a menace to their neighbors and they’re a menace throughout the globe.”

Thomas-Greenfield spoke of China’s diplomatic inroads throughout the Trump administration, which pursued an “America First” coverage that weakened worldwide alliances. And he or she made clear there could be a change beneath Biden to reengage internationally and promote American values.

She careworn that American management should be rooted within the nation’s core values — “assist for democracy, respect for common human rights, and the promotion of peace and safety.” And he or she mentioned that efficient diplomacy means creating “strong relationships,” discovering widespread floor and managing variations, and “doing real, old style, people-to-people diplomacy.”

At her listening to, she recalled attending a segregated highschool after which Louisiana State College “as a consequence of a lawsuit.” She mentioned she was “not the norm” among the many Ivy League graduates who additionally joined the International Service in 1982.

“And but, I had a unprecedented 35-year profession that culminated because the assistant secretary of state of African affairs,” Thomas-Greenfield mentioned. “To me, that represents the progress, and promise, of America.”

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