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June 05, 2013

Rice, Power Announcements Welcomed

Washington, D.C. – Today, following President Obama’s announcement that Ambassador Susan Rice will replace Tom Donilon as the administration’s National Security Advisor and Samantha Power is the nominee to replace Rice as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Human Rights First President and CEO Elisa Massimino issued the following statement:

“Today’s announcement underscores the president’s commitment to put human rights at the core of American national security and foreign policy.   Susan Rice and Samantha Power are each powerful and unflinching advocates for human rights.  It is reassuring that they will be working with the president through the next term of challenges and opportunities.

“Throughout her career, Ambassador Rice has been a strategic and tactical thinker on America’s role in the world as a champion for human rights. As U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, she restored American leadership on important issues such as conflict prevention and resolution.   One of her first challenges will be to implement the vision that President Obama laid out in his recent speech on counterterrorism, including closing Guantanamo and developing a post-war counterterrorism strategy that upholds our values and ideals as a nation.

“Samantha Power is an inspired choice to continue the work at the United Nations that was started by Ambassador Rice. At the White House, Power spearheaded initiatives to tackle some of the most vexing human rights challenges of our time, including atrocity prevention and the role of women in achieving peace and security.  Her eloquence and deep commitment to ensuring that our country lives up to its ideals is exactly what we need at the United Nations.  As a journalist and a policymaker, Power has distinguished herself as a fierce advocate for what’s right and a gifted strategist for moving bureaucracy to action.  We expect her work at the United Nations will only strengthen the capacity of our nation to lead on human rights.

“We look forward to working with Rice and Power in their new roles to advance American leadership on human rights.”

To speak with Massimino, contact Brenda Bowser Soder at bowsersoderb@humanrightsfirst.org or 202-370-3323.