David Satterfield, the outgoing U.S. ambassador to Turkey, will take up the role as U.S. Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa from Jeffrey Feltman who will step down from his post in coming days, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.
A veteran of the U.S. Foreign Service with more than four decades of experience, Satterfield has had a challenging post as U.S. ambassador in Turkey, where he navigated a tensed bilateral relationship between the two NATO allies.
Blinken said that the department intended for Feltman’s appointment as special envoy to be less than a year, adding that he would continue to serve in an advisory role.
“Ambassador Satterfield’s decades of diplomatic experience and work amidst some of the world’s most challenging conflicts will be instrumental in our continued effort to promote a peaceful and prosperous Horn of Africa and to advance U.S. interests in this strategic region,” Blinken said.
On Thursday, China also said it would appoint a special envoy to foster peace in conflicy-striken Horn of Africa.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi who made the comments in Kenya, which has been active in diplomatic efforts to halt the ongoing war in Ethiopia, added that China wanted to shift focus on the continent to trade over infrastructure.
“To share political consensus and to coordinate actions, China will appoint a special envoy of the Chinese ministry of foreign affairs for the Horn of Africa,” Wang told a news conference in the port city of Mombasa, via an interpreter.
Wang also said that the Horn of Africa nations should decide their own destiny and convene a peace conference.