Taranjit Singh Sandhu presented his credentials to President Trump on Feb. 6, 2020, to become ambassador of India to the United States. He has served in Washington, D.C., on two prior occasions: as deputy chief of mission at the Indian Embassy from 2013 to 2017 and as first secretary (political) from 1997 to 2000. He also served at the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations in New York from 2005 to 2009. Most recently, Ambassador Sandhu was high commissioner of India to Sri Lanka (2017-20). He had also served at the High Commission of India in Colombo earlier as head of the political wing from 2000 to 2004. In addition, he was consul general of India in Frankfurt from 2011 to 2013. Ambassador Sandhu has worked in the Ministry of External Affairs in various capacities, including as joint secretary (United Nations) from 2009 to 2011; later as joint secretary (administration) heading the Human Resource Division; and officer on special duty (press relations) from 1995 to 1997, serving as the liaison with foreign media in India. Upon joining the Indian Foreign Service in 1988, Ambassador Sandhu started his diplomatic career in the former Soviet Union, where he worked as third secretary (political) and second secretary (commercial) in the Indian Mission from 1990 to 1992. Following the breakup of Soviet Union, he was sent to open a new embassy in Ukraine, where he served as head of the political and administration wings in the Indian Embassy in Kiev from 1992 to 1994. Born Jan. 23, 1963, Ambassador Sandhu studied at The Lawrence School in Sanawar and graduated with history honors from St. Stephen’s College in Delhi. He also pursued a master’s degree in international relations at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi. Ambassador Sandhu is married to Reenat Sandhu, who is India’s ambassador to Italy. They have two children. His interests include books, movies and outdoor sports.
Yokoudema Kadokalih departed the post of second counselor in charge of political and legal affairs issues, having held the position since September 2015.
Awoki Koinzi assumed the position of second counselor in charge of political issues and defense in September 2019, having previously served as second counselor at the Togolese Permanent Mission to the United Nations in Geneva in charge of human rights and disarmament issues. Koinzi graduated from the École Nationale d’Administration (ENA) of Lomé and started his career as a diplomat in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and Togolese Overseas in 2008.
Dame Karen Pierce has been appointed to serve as Britain’s ambassador to the United Kingdom, becoming the first woman to hold the position. Currently serving as Britain’s permanent representative to the United Nations in New York since March 2018, she will succeed Ambassador Kim Darroch, who resigned last year following leaked diplomatic cables in which he described President Trump as “wacky” and “a very stupid guy.” A career diplomat, Ambassador Pierce previously served director general for political affairs and chief operating officer for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in London from 2016 to 2018. She also served in New York for a prior posting as Britain’s deputy permanent representative to the U.N. from 2006 to 2009, after which she returned to London to become director of the FCO’s South Asia and Afghanistan Department and the U.K.’s special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan. In 2012, she started her second multilateral role, this time in Geneva, where she was permanent representative to the U.K. Mission to the United Nations, World Trade Organization and other international organizations until 2015. She was Britain’s ambassador to Afghanistan from 2015 to 2016. Ambassador Pierce joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1981. Her first posting was in Tokyo (198-87), after which she returned to London to work in the FCO Security Policy Department. She also worked in Washington as the private secretary to the British ambassador from 1992 to 1995. In addition, from 1996 and 2006, Ambassador Pierce held several positions in London, including team leader for Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova; deputy head of the Eastern Adriatic (Balkans) Department; head of the FCO Newsroom; head of the EU Department (Bilateral) and concurrently head of the Afghanistan Political Military Unit after 9/11 before returning to the Balkans as Balkans Coordinator from 2002 to 2006. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Girton College in Cambridge and a master’s degree in international strategy and diplomacy from the London School of Economics.