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U.S.: Panel Backs Power As UN Envoy

Samantha Power, left, is on track to replace Susan Rice as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.
The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee has backed Samantha Power becoming the next American ambassador to the United Nations.

The 16-2 vote on July 23 in favor of Power clears the way for a vote on her nomination in the full 100-member Senate.

Reports say she is expected to be easily confirmed.

Power faced some scrutiny during the committee hearings over comments she made when she was a journalist and human rights activist that were seen as critical of the United States and its ally Israel.

Her nomination has been denounced by Venezuela, whose government Power has called “repressive.”

Venezuela says it has ended efforts to improve ties with Washington over the nomination.

Power won a Pulitzer Prize for her book on U.S. failures to prevent genocide around the world.

If confirmed, Power will replace Susan Rice as Washington's UN envoy. Rice is moving on to serve as President Barack Obama's national security adviser.

Based on reports form AP and Reuters