Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg will testify at a House Committee on Foreign Affairs hearing on the conflict in Libya next week, the panel announced Thursday.
Steinberg will be appearing in lieu of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who had originally been called by the committee to testify. The hearing date has also been moved from Wednesday to Thursday.
The event will be the first formal congressional hearing to address the U.S. role in the Libya conflict. Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) has requested that the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hold a hearing of its own.
A spokesman for the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said that its chairman, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) “understands the importance and complexity of our role in protecting the people of Libya and the committee will hold public hearings in the near future.”
“He has been traveling in the region over recess to get information first hand from our allies,” committee spokesman Frederick Jones said. “Senator Kerry and other senior congressional leaders from both parties have been briefed by the Obama administration over the past two weeks. In addition, the conflict in Libya was explored in depth on March 17 when Under Secretary of State Bill Burns testified in public for more than two hours about the uprisings in Libya and elsewhere in North Africa and the Middle East.”