Washington: Senator John Kerry moved a step closer to being confirmed as the next US Secretary of State, getting a unanimous vote of approval today from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
The full Senate is soon expected to formally confirm his nomination thus paving the way for Kerry being sworn in as the next Secretary of State.
Kerry, 69, was nominated by US President Barack Obama, in December. He would replace Hillary Clinton.
Kerry`s confirmation was unanimously approved by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, of which he was the chairman for the last four years.
"You`re going to be an incredible Secretary of State," the incoming chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Robert Menendez, said, adding his nomination has been confirmed by the committee with lightning speed.
"I think it`s fair to say that few individuals know as many presidents and prime ministers, or grasp our foreign policies as firmly as John Kerry," Obama had said announcing his nomination.
"And this makes him a perfect choice to guide American diplomacy in the years ahead," he said.
A veteran of the Vietnam War, Kerry is well acquainted with the foreign affairs. He has been heading the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for the last four years.
His father, Richard, was a Foreign Service officer.
"Thank you all, very very much. I`m honoured beyond words," Kerry said, adding that he is expected to deliver a final speech in the US Senate tomorrow.
Pakistan Ambassador to the US, Sherry Rehman,
congratulated Kerry on his confirmation.
"I extend our sincerest and best congratulations to Senator Kerry on his confirmation as Secretary of State. We all look forward to working with him and his team at a time of challenging transitions for the region," Rehman said.
"The Pak-US relationship has also recently taken an important turn for a more stable trajectory, and we hope to build on more positives together. We are now engaged in a full spectrum of bilateral dialogue groups at the strategic and working levels across many ministries," Rehman said.