Samantha Power, the newly confirmed U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, didn’t attend the Security Council’s emergency meeting on the alleged chemical-weapons attack in Syria on Thursday (a deputy instead represented the U.S. as one of the veto-wielding permanent members; no action was taken).
Over the last couple days, when pressed, the State Department offered little information about Power’s absence, but it turns out she was in Ireland, her place of birth. U.N. sources revealed to Fox News that she was in the country for a personal trip.
Power assumed the office on August 2. Officials say that her trip was preplanned and that she couldn’t have returned in time; the ambassador apparently was in constant contact with her staff and the White House throughout the week.
On the day of the reports, Power took to Twitter to call for urgen action from the U.N.:
Reports devastating: 100s dead in streets, including kids killed by chem weapons. UN must get there fast & if true, perps must face justice.
— Samantha Power (@AmbassadorPower) August 21, 2013