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Obama's nominee for Iraq ambassador withdraws

President Barack Obama's ambassadorial nominee for Iraq has withdrawn from running for the top diplomatic position in Baghdad mainly because of opposition from a group of Senators.

world Updated: Jun 19, 2012 10:20 IST

President Barack Obama's ambassadorial nominee for Iraq has withdrawn from running for the top diplomatic position in Baghdad mainly because of opposition from a group of Senators.

In his resignation letter, Brett McGurk said that his withdrawal "is in the best interests of the country" because "Iraq urgently needs an ambassador."

McGurk said the most difficult part of this process was watching my wife become a part of it.

"She is the most precious thing in the world to me, and the depiction of our relationship has been both surreal and devastating. We have also witnessed real sacrifice and suffering in Iraq and know that nothing should be allowed to distract from the pressing work that must be done to build a better future there," he said.

In a statement, National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor thanked McGurk for his years of service to the country.

"He served two administrations, and his commitment to the national interest and to the mission was always clear," he said.

"He has proved himself to be a skilled diplomat willing to take on some of the toughest challenges at the toughest times in a difficult region. While we regret to see Brett withdraw his candidacy there is no doubt that he will be called on again to serve the country," Vietor said.