Rizzuto arrives to take up consulate position
A controversial business tycoon took over as the United States Consul General to Bermuda yesterday.
Lee Rizzuto Jr succeeds Constance Dierman, a professional diplomat, who left the island in June.
The US Consulate said Mr Rizzuto would lead a team whose mission was to protect US citizens in Bermuda and deepen the strong economic and cultural ties between the US and Bermuda.
More than 93,000 people signed a petition last month in protest at the appointment of Mr Rizzuto, a controversial contributor to Donald Trump's presidential campaign.
Campaign group Social Justice Bermuda also organised two demonstrations against the move that involved dozens of people outside the US Consulate in Devonshire.
John Rankin, the Governor, who received the petition, said: “Under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, the appointment of a Consul General is for the sending state to make.
“So the decision to appoint Mr Rizzuto as US Consul General is one that is made by the United States Government.
“The US is, of course, our nearest geographical neighbour and whatever views may be on this matter, I think it is important that we have an effective relationship with whomever represents the United States in this country and my job as Governor will be to achieve that effective relationship.”