On August 30, 2019, Pompeo appointed career diplomat Matthew Palmer’s as Special Representative for the Western Balkans.
The Secretary of State has appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary Matthew Palmer as his Special Representative for the Western Balkans. In this role, Palmer will lead our efforts to strengthen U.S. diplomatic engagement in support of peace, stability, and prosperity in the region and focus on integration of the Western Balkan countries into Western institutions.
As Special Representative, Palmer will travel to Slovenia beginning on September 1 to attend the Bled Strategic Forum. He will also represent the United States at the Quint Balkan Directors meeting in Brussels and attend meetings in Vienna and Podgorica, September 4-10.
In addition to serving as the Secretary’s Special Representative, Palmer will continue to serve as Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, a position he has held since 2018. Previously, he was Director of the Office of South Central Europe.
October 3, 2019, Trump announced his intent to appoint Richard Grenell to serve concurrently as U.S. Ambassador to Germany and as Special Presidential Envoy for Serbia and Kosovo Peace Negotiations:
Richard A. Grenell has served as the United States Ambassador to Germany since May 8, 2018. Mr. Grenell, a foreign policy writer and commentator, founded the international consulting firm Capitol Media Partners in 2010. For nearly two decades, he has served as the primary communications adviser for public officials at the Federal, State, local, and international levels, as well as for a Fortune 200 ranked company. Mr. Grenell is the longest serving United States spokesman at the United Nations (2001-2008) having served four United States Ambassadors. He earned a B.A. from Evangel University and an MPA from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
Great to hear that @StateDept has appointed Matthew Palmer as #US Special Representative for the Western #Balkans. An excellent and no nonsense diplomat. With a new #EU Commission emerging, seems we could see a fresh effort on #Kosovo #Serbia by year’s end https://t.co/NJAlgWBUyt
— James Ker-Lindsay (@JamesKerLindsay) August 31, 2019
State Department's Special Representative for Western Balkans Matthew Palmer met with PM @DuskoMarkovicCG: #Montenegro is the leader and most successful multi-ethnic state in the region. It is no coincidence that Montenegro is the first country I am visiting after taking office. pic.twitter.com/kvlHGuSkoz
— Govt. of Montenegro (@MeGovernment) September 9, 2019
OK, this is confusing. Thought the #US had appointed Matthew Palmer as its Special Envoy for the Western #Balkans, with the clear indication he’d lead on #Kosovo #Serbia. But now it’s reported @RichardGrenell will be the US special envoy for any talks!? https://t.co/j6DvY1pi97
— James Ker-Lindsay (@JamesKerLindsay) October 4, 2019
Yesterday, the US named Richard Grenell, currently the US Ambassador to Germany, as its new special envoy for Serbia-Kosovo normalization talks. This announcement has met with a mixed reception in the Western Balkans.https://t.co/KkJv1IWCvo
— European Institute (@ColumbiaEurope) October 4, 2019
A month after the appointment of Matthew Palmer as the new US Special Representative to the Western Balkans, US President Trump announced that his ambassador to Berlin, Richard Grenell, will be the envoy for the ongoing Serbia-Kosovo negotiations.https://t.co/ARIkfXfvpM
— Balkan Insight (@BalkanInsight) October 4, 2019