KABUL, Afghanistan — Ryan Crocker, a respected diplomat who came out of retirement to become the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, is leaving his post this summer, a year ahead of schedule.
U.S. Embassy spokesman Mark Thornburg on Tuesday confirmed Crocker's plan to depart. Rumors had swirled during the weekend summit of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization in Chicago, which Crocker attended.
The 62-year-old Crocker had served as the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, taking the diplomatic helm there during a crucial period, from 2007 to 2009, that coincided with a sharp increase in U.S. troop levels to tamp down escalating violence. He arrived in Afghanistan last July.
The ambassador's reasons for leaving the Kabul post were not disclosed, but a diplomatic associate cited personal considerations. As late as Tuesday morning, the embassy was refusing to comment on "personnel matters."