Washington — The United States is naming its first international envoy for gay rights.

The State Department says Randy Berry will be its special envoy to promote human rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals.

Berry is a veteran diplomat currently serving as consul general at the U.S. Consulate in Amsterdam, Netherlands. He’s also served at U.S. posts in Bangladesh, Egypt, Uganda and South Africa, and speaks Spanish and Arabic.

The State Department said earlier it would appoint an openly gay foreign service officer to the post.

Secretary of State John Kerry says Berry will help the Obama administration put LGBT rights at the core of its human rights efforts globally. The U.S. has urged foreign countries to eliminate laws that criminalize consensual same-sex activity.

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