US President Joe Biden has nominated Kurt Campbell, coordinator of Indo-Pacific Affairs at the US National Security Council, to be the second diplomat in the State Department behind Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
In an email obtained by VOA and directed to State Department staff, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Campbell’s nomination “comes at a critical turning point,” simultaneously of the United States’ investment in an “unmatched network of alliances and partnerships” in the Indo-Pacific.
If confirmed by the Senate, Campbell will replace Wendy Sherman, who retired on July 28.
Campbell was the assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs from 2009 to 2013 under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
The policy of the Biden Administration requires the United States to compete and cooperate with China in increasingly complex diplomatic and economic relations.
“We are competing with China, but we are not looking for conflict, confrontation or a new Cold War. We are in favor of handling competition responsibly,” Campbell told reporters in a June 14 announcement before Blinken’s visit. in Beijing.
The United States and China are preparing for a meeting in November between Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation leaders’ summit in San Francisco.
“I think maintaining high-level engagement and practical areas of communication in an environment where competition remains a dominant theme in our relationship is what we can expect and what we can do,” Campbell explained in a interview. China Talka newsletter focusing on US-China relations.
Campbell played a key role during the administration of former President Barack Obama in shaping Washington’s “pivot to Asia” policy, which changed US foreign policy in that region.
Campbell is married to Lael Brainard, Biden’s top economic adviser.