Top US Diplomat for Asia Postpones Visit to Laos Due to Covid

Daniel J Kritenbrink was US Ambassador to Vietnam from 2017 to 2021.
Daniel J Kritenbrink served as US Ambassador to Vietnam from 2017 to 2021.

US Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel J Kritenbrink will postpone his visit to Laos after testing positive for Covid-19.

“After experiencing symptoms, I, unfortunately, tested positive for Covid-19,” he tweeted through the Department of State’s Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Twitter account on 1 May.

“Sadly, this means that I am postponing my trip to Cambodia and Laos and will quarantine at home. I look forward to the opportunity to travel to both countries in the future,” he added.

According to Phnom Penh Post, a statement from the US Embassy in Cambodia last week said that Mr. Kritenbrink’s visit to Laos and Cambodia would highlight US commitment to two of the youngest and most dynamic societies in the region.

It said that the visit would help reinforce ASEAN centrality and underscore the United States’ commitment to the Mekong-US Partnership to address transboundary challenges and promote a secure, open, and prosperous Mekong sub-region.

In Laos, Kritenbrink was to meet with Foreign Minister Saleumxay Kommasith, Deputy Foreign Minister Thongphane Savanphet, and officials from the Mekong River Commission.

The Assistant Secretary was also to engage with the alumni of the Department of State exchange programs.