Paul Schemm, a correspondent for The Associated Press in Cairo, has been appointed the news organization's chief correspondent for North Africa, responsible for coverage of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.
The appointment was announced Monday by Senior Managing Editor John Daniszewski, who oversees international news and photos.
"Paul Schemm has been a close student of the Middle East for more than a decade and has been in the forefront of journalists covering the current conflict in Libya. As North Africa chief correspondent, he will explore this vital and dynamic region for AP's vast audience around the world," Daniszewski said.
Schemm _ who speaks French and Arabic in addition to English _ will be based in Morocco at a time of historic change in North Africa and throughout the Arab world. He will also report on efforts in the region to combat terrorism, trade with Europe and the illegal migration of Africans to Europe. He will be responsible for AP's text report in the three countries and help aggressively develop video stories there as well.
"Paul has been at the center of our coverage of the upheaval in North Africa, and his new role will position him perfectly to help our audiences understand these transformational times," Europe Editor Niko Price said in London.
Schemm, 39, joined AP in 2007 in Cairo as an editor on the Middle East regional editing desk, helping to shape the report covering a broad swath of countries stretching from Sudan to Afghanistan. He covered Israel's offensive in Gaza, suicide bombings in Iraq, violence in Yemen and the mass protests that unseated longtime Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak last month. In recent weeks, he has covered the rebellion against Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi.
Earlier, he worked as a reporter for Agence France-Presse in Baghdad and Cairo, and with Cairo Times magazine and Middle East Times newspaper, among other publications. He has also reported from Algeria and Morocco.
Schemm, an American who grew up in the United States, Belgium and Germany, holds master's degrees in journalism and Middle East studies from the University of Texas, and a degree in political science from Williams College.