PM names next Australian ambassador to UN

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has appointed career diplomat Gillian Bird to replace Gary Quinlan as the next ambassador to the United Nations.

A senior diplomat has been appointed Australia's next ambassador to the United Nations.

Gillian Bird has been nominated by Prime Minister Tony Abbott to fill the role, having just completed a five-year stint as Australia's first ambassador to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

Ms Bird is currently a deputy secretary in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and was awarded the public service medal in 2012 for her extensive contributions to diplomatic issues.

She will replace Gary Quinlan, who has held the position since 2009, from next year.

Mr Abbott also officially confirmed a one-year extension to the term of Kim Beazley as Australian ambassador to the United States.

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