INTERNATIONAL: State Department hunts successor as Beers resigns

WASHINGTON: The US Office of Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs is launching its hunt to replace Under-Secretary of State Charlotte Beers, who resigned unexpectedly last week.

Beers, who quit for health reasons after less than a year-and-a-half in the role, has been replaced in the interim by Patricia Harrison, who was formerly acting as assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs.

A State Department spokesman said Beers' sudden resignation will not cause a major shift in mission.

Widespread speculation has already begun about who will take over the operation.

The Public Affairs Council director of communications and PR Wes Pedersen said: 'With an administration that is markedly conservative, the candidate will clearly not come from the liberal fringe of broadcasting or Hollywood.'

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