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U.S.: Hearing For Defense Nominee; Possible Albright Vote Today

Washington, 22 January 1997 (RFE/RL) - The U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee has scheduled a hearing today on the confirmation of former U.S. Senator William Cohen's appointment as secretary of defense.

Cohen was chosen by President Bill Clinton to succeed Defense Secretary William Perry, who is returning to the private sector after serving in the Clinton Cabinet since February 1994. Cohen is a Republican from the northeastern state of Maine.

Cohen served in the Senate from 1978 until his retirement in 1996. He was a member of the Armed Services Committee the entire time.

In other U.S. Senate business, the full 100-member Senate is expected to approve without debate Clinton's appointment of Madeleine Albright as secretary of state. The White House says that Clinton will administer the oath of office to Albright as soon as is possible after the Senate vote.

Deputy secretary of state Strobe Talbott is standing in as secretary until Albright takes office.