US approves envoys to Iraq, Pak
The US Senate on Saturday approved new American ambassadors to Iraq and Pakistan, both veteran diplomats who will take over as anti-Western protests sweep through Muslim countries.
In a voice vote, the Senate confirmed Robert Stephen Beecroft as the new envoy to Iraq, and Richard Olson to be the new ambassador to Pakistan.
Beecroft will head Washington's largest embassy in the world, amid challenges in US-Iraq ties over Baghdad's warming relations with Shia neighbor Iran.
Olson, a 30-year State Department veteran, takes over as Islamabad fears the scheduled 2014 withdrawal of US and Nato combat troops from neighboring Afghanistan could leave a security vacuum in the country.