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Thu Oct 31, 2019, 05:21 PM

Trump taps North Korea envoy as State Department No. 2

Source: CNN

(CNN)President Donald Trump has tapped Stephen Biegun, his North Korea envoy, as the next No. 2 at the State Department. The White House announced the President's intent to nominate Biegun as deputy secretary of state in a press release on Thursday. Biegun would take over the role from the current Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan, who has been nominated to be ambassador to Russia.

A senior State Department official said that Biegun will keep his North Korea portfolio even if he is confirmed for the deputy role. He was appointed to the role of US special representative for North Korea in August 2018 to lead efforts to negotiate "the final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea." Those negotiations have largely stalled.

North Korea fired two "unidentified projectiles" into the waters between South Korea and Japan on Thursday afternoon, the South Korean government said in a statement.

If confirmed, Biegun would take on the role amid intense speculation about Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's political future. In numerous interviews, Pompeo has downplayed the prospect of a Senate bid, despite his frequent trips to his home state of Kansas.

Read more: https://www.cnn.com/2019/10/31/politics/biegun-deputy-secretary-of-state/index.html

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