Last Updated: November 01, 2023, 01:00 IST
WASHINGTON: The Senate has confirmed Jacob Lew as ambassador to Israel, filling the key diplomatic post as the country is fighting a war with Hamas.
Lew, a treasury secretary under President Barack Obama, was confirmed 53-43.
He has promised to stand side by side with Israel’s leaders as they respond to the militant group’s surprise attack on Oct. 7, telling senators in his confirmation hearing earlier in October that “at this moment, there is no greater mission than to be asked to strengthen the ties between the United States and the state of Israel.”
President Joe Biden nominated Lew, who goes by Jack, last month to fill the post left vacant when Tom Nides left as ambassador in July. Democrats say Lew’s wealth of government experience — he also was chief of staff to Obama and White House budget director under Obama and President Bill Clinton — makes him the right person to fill the post at a a critical moment in the two countries’ relationship.
Republicans criticized Lew for his role in the Obama White House when it negotiated the Iran nuclear agreement in 2015, among other foreign policy moves. The deal with Iran — the chief sponsor of Hamas — was later scuttled by former President Donald Trump.
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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – Associated Press)