Fort Smith native's nomination approved by Senate

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - Fort Smith native Anne Patterson has been approved by the U.S. Senate as assistant secretary of state for Near East Affairs.

The Senate voted 78-16 Monday to confirm President Barack Obama's nomination of Patterson to the post.

Republican Sen. John Boozman of Arkansas issued a statement saying he's confident that Patterson "will help promote and protect our national security."

Patterson is currently the U.S. ambassador to Egypt and is formerly ambassador to Pakistan.

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