Secretary of State Antony Blinken reportedly announced on Friday that Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman is retiring after decades of service in the field of international policy.
As the principal negotiator of the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA) under the Obama administration and as the director of the Biden administration’s China policy, Sherman has assumed the initiative on a number of high-profile foreign policy topics.
Sherman formerly held the position of Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs from 2011 to 2015, when she spearheaded efforts to implement the JCPOA.
Sherman is now the United States’ second-ranking diplomat.
In addition, she advised former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright on North Korea policy while serving as Counselor of the State Department from 1997 to 2001.
Under Blinken, Sherman had assumed the major responsibility for leading the State Department’s China policy, and there was disagreement within the organization about Sherman’s handling of China in the wake of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) flying a spy balloon over the United States in February.
Before the spy balloon incident, the government had a number of measures in place to try to balance China, such as export curbs and penalties.
Sherman, however, ordered the postponement of such actions after the balloon was shot down and Blinken’s trip was postponed out of fear over further deteriorating American ties with Beijing according to a report from Reuters.