Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd appointed ambassador to U.S.

Former Prime Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd has been appointed Australia’s next ambassador to the United States.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced the appointment Tuesday, citing Rudd’s roles as leader and foreign minister as well as his academic background as a China scholar and previous work in the U.S. Albanese said Rudd would begin early next year.

Rudd is appointed at a time when both countries are deepening security cooperation in response to a rising China.

“Dr. Rudd brings unmatched experience to the role,” Albanese said.

In a statement, Rudd said he was greatly honored to be chosen. He said Australia faces the most challenging security and diplomatic environment it has in decades.

Rudd served as prime minister from 2007 to 2010 and again briefly in 2013 before his center-left Labor party lost a general election. He served as foreign minister from 2010 to 2012.

Australia has a rough-and-tumble political style, and Rudd was abruptly replaced as prime minister by Julia Gillard in 2010, who was then herself abruptly replaced by Rudd in 2013.

Rudd, who speaks fluent Mandarin, has written and spoken widely on foreign relations with China since he quit politics in 2013. He completed an Oxford doctorate on the world view of China’s president, Xi Jinping, in September and heads the international relations institute the Asia Society in New York.

Rudd will take up his post in early 2023.


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