State Department Special Envoys – Focus or Fat?

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Secretary of State Rex Tillerson wants to eliminate dozens of special envoy positions at the State Department. Some would be removed altogether, like the special envoy for closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in Cuba, reflecting President Donald Trump’s rejection of the Obama Administration’s failed attempt to shut the prison. Others would have their responsibilities transferred to a regional or functional bureau.

“The Department will be able to better execute its mission by integrating certain envoys and special representative offices within the regional and functional bureaus, and eliminating those that have accomplished or outlived their original purpose,” Tillerson wrote in a letter to Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Corker this week. Parts of Tillerson’s plan need congressional approval.

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