President Obama has nominated a longtime diplomat to the Mideast as the US' next ambassador to Libya, filling the sensitive post that has been vacant since Chris Stevens was killed in an attack on the American consulate in September and signaling the United States' commitment to the North African country as it undergoes a perilous transition from decades of dictatorship. Deborah K. Jones has served in American embassies in Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, and Syria as a career diplomat. She also worked in US embassies in Turkey and Ethiopia.
She would head the US diplomatic mission in Libya's capital of Tripoli under the specter of increased tensions and tight security there since Stevens' death. "I have no doubt that she will help to strengthen the partnership between us," says Secretary of State John Kerry of Jones. Kerry is meeting with the Libyan prime minister today, two days after the six-month anniversary of the attack, notes Politico. "We must not walk away from the difficult work that Chris Stevens and his cohorts were so dedicated to," Kerry said. (Read more Libya stories.)