The Foreign Secretary has agreed to Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles’ request to step down from his role as the Foreign Secretary’s Special Representative on Afghanistan and Pakistan with effect from today. They agreed that as the role has evolved since February 2009 it is not now necessary for the UK to have a full time Special Representative, separate from policy responsibility for Afghanistan and Pakistan in the Foreign Office.
The Foreign Secretary has appointed Karen Pierce, Director South Asia and Afghanistan, as Special Representative.
“Sherard has made an invaluable contribution to UK policy towards Afghanistan and Pakistan. He showed great commitment, dedication and expertise during an important phase in international efforts in the region. He has a very able successor in Karen Pierce. Afghanistan and Pakistan continue to be this government’s top priority in foreign affairs.”