Donald Trump names Robert Williams as his point person for South Asia

US President Donald Trump on Wednesday said that he intends to name an experienced intelligence officer as the assistant secretary of state for South Asian affairs.

In a statement issued by the White House, Trump said that Robert Williams, for more than 20 years, “has specialised in South Asia and Afghanistan affairs as an analyst and intelligence officer.”

According to the statement, Williams, since 2017, has served at the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) in Washington DC, as associate deputy director for Intelligence and Directorate for Operations, Xinhua news agency reported.

Previously, he was the national intelligence officer for South Asia at the National Intelligence Council and defence intelligence officer for South Asia at DIA.

Williams has also been an adjunct associate professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service since 2017, and was previously a senior adjunct professorial lecturer at American University’s School of International Service from 2013 to 2016.

He earned his B.A. at the University of Pennsylvania in 1993 and M.A. at the George Washington University in 1996.

The Trump administration unveiled its South Asia strategy last year. However, the strategy has been tested by US continuous strained ties with Pakistan, and the frequent casualties in Afghanistan.

Afghan officials said earlier on Wednesday that more than 40 fighters had been killed in clash between government forces and the Taliban in the insurgency-battered nation over the past 24 hours.

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