September 13, 2016 / 9:27 AM / 2 years ago

EU lawmakers back Briton Julian King for security commissioner

STRASBOURG (Reuters) - A European Parliament committee endorsed Julian King on Tuesday as Britain’s new member of the European Commission with responsibility for security, the committee chairman said.

European-Commissioner-designate Julian King attends a hearing ahead of a vote to approve his appointment as Security Commissioner at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, September 12, 2016. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

King’s confirmation in office would now go to party leaders and be put to a parliamentary vote on Thursday, Claude Moraes, chair of the civil liberties committee told reporters. Lawmakers expect him to be accepted by a clear majority.

Despite questions over the role a British government nominee could play on an EU executive as Britain prepares to leave the bloc following June’s Brexit referendum, King, a diplomat and former Commission staffer, had impressed the committee with his grasp on the security portfolio, Moraes said.

The previous British commissioner, Jonathan Hill, resigned following the referendum.

Reporting by Alastair Macdonald; @macdonaldrtr; Editing by Janet Lawrence

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