Amin drafts apology to foreign service officers at State

Friday - 10/7/2011, 6:33pm EDT

Two days after making comments in which he criticized State Department foreign service officers, Kirit Amin, the departing chief information officer in State's Bureau of Consular Affairs, issued an apology, saying he regretted if his remarks brought discredit on the diplomatic corps.

At issue was an exclusive interview Amin granted to Federal News Radio when the station learned he was leaving his post in the bureau. Amin, saying he was transferring to a temporary job in the State Department CIO's office, issued a list of complaints, including cronyism in contracting and the domination of the department by foreign service officers who "go overseas and have a good time and come here and have no idea what they are doing."

"To my colleagues and peers at AFSA, I offer my complete and sincere apology," Amin wrote in a statement he provided to Federal News Radio on Friday. "The phone conversation with [reporter Jason] Miller, someone who I have worked with and known for some time, could not have come at a more inconvenient time. I had just learned of my new assignment and was working to put together a transition strategy to honor that obligation, when I took the call. It is never wrong to work with members of the media, however, in this age of instant communications I should have remembered that an instant answer is not always required."

Amin, who declined to be interviewed on the air Friday, said he had issued a separate, private apology to the membership of the American Foreign Service Association earlier in the week. The group had issued a denunciation of Amin's remarks after Federal News Radio published them on Wednesday.

"It is unfortunate that I shared some personal feelings in a public forum, especially because it was with regard to people who I respect, honor and work to support as we strive for common good and mutual goals, within the State Department," Amin continued in his statement Friday. "I look forward to continuing my contribution to the reachable goal of advanced and supportive technology, designed to underscore the professional delivery of services and performance at the Department of State and federal government at large."

Read Amin's full apology here.

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