US President Joe Biden has nominated his confidant Mark Gitenstein for the post of ambassador to the European Union.
The proposed appointment, which still has to be approved by the Senate in Washington, is welcomed in Brussels because there has been no official EU ambassador for months. The EU and the US agreed last month at a summit, the first since 2014, in Brussels to strengthen ties after a chilly spell under Biden’s predecessor Donald Trump.
On Twitter, the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, welcomed the nomination of Gitenstein by the President. “We have a vast transatlantic and global agenda ahead of us. We need all hands on deck, and I look forward to working with him.”
Gitenstein, 74, is a lawyer and was ambassador to Romania between 2009 and 2012, from where his grandparents emigrated to the US. In addition, he served on the Senate Judiciary Committee for 18 years, where he became close to Biden.
He also appointed him last year as an advisor to his transition team after the Democrats won the presidential elections.