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Diplomacy in Action

Deputy Secretary Higginbottom's Meeting With Members of the Security Best Practices Panel


Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
March 26, 2014

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Today, Deputy Secretary Heather Higginbottom met with members of the Best Practices Panel, a five-member panel of outside, independent security experts convened to help identify best practices and to evaluate U.S. security platforms in high-risk, high-threat posts. On the recommendation of the independent Accountability Review Board (ARB) for the September 2012 attack on the U.S. Special Mission Compound in Benghazi, Libya, the State Department established the Best Practice Panel as part of broader efforts to improve the way American diplomats and development experts overseas are protected.

Today, panel members briefed the Deputy Secretary on their findings and recommendations, many of which built upon the recommendations made by the ARB, including establishing a Department-wide risk management model and policy; increasing hard-skills training for the foreign affairs community; and developing a security accountability framework.

Deputy Secretary Higginbottom expressed appreciation to the Panel and reaffirmed the State Department's commitment to constantly improving our security posture at overseas posts and to implementing each of the ARB's 29 recommendations, including the creation of a new Deputy Assistant Secretary dedicated to high-threat posts, hiring new Diplomatic Security personnel, and adding new Marine Security detachments.

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