US swears in new Ambassador to Maldives

Career US diplomat Alaina Teplitz was sworn in as the new Ambassador to Maldives and Sri Lanka on Monday.

Teplitz was nominated by President Donald Trump as the next Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives in May and was confirmed by the US Senate last month.

She would replace the current envoy Atul Keshap, who has held the position since 2015.

The Indian-American Keshap had been vocal in criticism of the outgoing Maldives government over restrictions on fundamental freedoms and jailing of opposition leaders.

A career member of the Senior Foreign Service with the rank of Minister Counselor, she joined the US State Department in 1991. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service.

Teplitz would head the US mission based in Colombo in the wake of the opposition alliance's stunning victory in last month's presidential election.

US meanwhile has pledged support for the new government and to assist in efforts to reform the crisis-hit island nation.