High US diplomat in Europe withdraws

TThe main official of European affairs of the Department of State has resigned and abandons the foreign service.

Wess Mitchell, undersecretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, appointed by Trump, resigned on January 4, starting on February 15, according to the Washington Post. Mitchell's departure after 16 months occurs when President Trump's approach to transatlantic alliances such as NATO has forced relations with some traditional US partners abroad.

Mitchell, 41, said his decision should not be interpreted as a protest against the foreign policy of the Trump administration, but should be attributed to personal and professional factors.

He highlighted his achievements in shaping the European aspects of national security and defense strategies, while defending some of his most controversial options, such as inviting the Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto to meet with the secretary State Mike Pompeo and national security adviser John Bolton.

"I fully support him, the work he's doing, the leadership team here," Mitchell said of Pompeo. "But I feel that I have done what I came to do, my children claim more of my time now than the public."

State Department spokesman Robert Palladino praised Mitchell as a "valuable and effective leader" in a couple of tweets on Tuesday. Palladino also announced that Mitchell would be replaced by his understudy Elisabeth Millard.

Assistant Secretary A. Wess Mitchell has been a valuable and effective leader in @StateDept And good friend of our allies and partners in. #Europe. We thank you for your service and wish you and your family the best.

– Robert Palladino (@StateDeputySPOX)
January 22, 2019

Before joining the State Department, Mitchell worked at the Center for the Analysis of European Policies, a group of experts he founded in 2006. He told the Post that he had yet to finalize his life plans after Foggy Bottom.

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