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Syracuse University alumnus tapped to serve as US ambassador to Afghanistan

Courtesy of Stephen Sartori

John R. Bass is a Class of 1986 graduate of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.

President Donald Trump on July 20 tapped John R. Bass, a Syracuse University alumnus, to serve as the United States ambassador to Afghanistan.

A Class of 1986 graduate of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Bass received a degree in international relations before beginning his diplomatic career in 1988.

Bass is currently the U.S. ambassador to Turkey, a position he has held since 2014. He previously served as executive secretary of the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. ambassador to Georgia and a diplomat in missions to Iraq, Italy, Belgium and Chad.

As ambassador to Afghanistan, Bass will lead State Department diplomatic efforts in a nation ravaged by war since the U.S. invasion in 2001. The Taliban, Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State continue to operate in Afghanistan.

Bass’ appointment comes as the Trump administration works to decide its future strategy in Afghanistan. Defense Secretary James Mattis said the administration is “close” to finalizing its plans, CNN reported Friday.

The U.S. Senate must confirm Bass’ nomination before he can assume his new role.

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