Obama to nominate new NATO commander

Washington, March 29 (IANS) President Barack Obama is to nominate Air Force General Philip Breedlove as new NATO commander, after the earlier nominee John Allen decided to retire, according to US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

Hagel announced it Thursday during a press briefing at the Pentagon, saying Obama is nominating Breedlove, commander of US Air Forces in Europe and Africa, “to serve as the new commander of our European Command, Supreme Allied Command”.
Obama initially nominated Allen, who most recently commanded US forces in Afghanistan, to the NATO job, Xinhua reported.
His nomination had been placed on hold amid a Pentagon investigation into his emails exchanges with a woman related to former CIA director David Petraeus’s extra marital affair until Allen was cleared of misconduct.
Allen told Obama last month he has decided to retire.
If confirmed by Congress, Breedlove is to succeed Admiral James Stavridis in the NATO job.
The North Atlantic Council, the political governing body of NATO, has already approved the appointment, according to the Pentagon.