US

New US ambassador Murphy touches down in Berlin

DDP/The Local
DDP/The Local - [email protected] • 21 Aug, 2009 Updated Fri 21 Aug 2009 10:42 CEST
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Half a year after President Barack Obama took office, the new US ambassador to Germany, Philip Murphy, finally arrived in Berlin on Friday morning.

Murphy, a fluent German speaker, arrived with his wife Tammy and their four children to take up the key diplomatic post. Originally nominated on July 9 by Obama, Murphy was confirmed by the US Senate on August 7 and sworn in five days later.

On his arrival, Murphy expressed his intention to serve in the role with “boundless enthusiasm.” He spoke of the importance of Germany's relationship with the United States, describing it as “amongst the most important global alliances of the last 60 years.”

“History must act as an ever-present signpost,” Murphy said. “But it is the responsibility of this generation to give the partnership between Germany and the United States its magic in the twenty-first century.”

Murphy, who holds a degree in economics from Harvard University and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, worked for US bank Goldman Sachs for 23 years. During this time, he spent four years between 1993 and 1997 at their Frankfurt office. After his departure from the bank, Murphy worked as National Finance Chair for the US Democratic Party.

Murphy takes the post after the 2008 departure of William R. Timken, who had held the position since 2005. German officials are privately hoping Murphy's familiarity with the country will ease Berlin's ties to Washington after hosting two US ambassadors with little knowledge of Germany.

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DDP/The Local 2009/08/21 10:42

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