The former US Senator and Northern Ireland envoy George Mitchell, the man chosen by President Obama, has been appointed as Middle East envoy by new US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Mitchell, 75, said Thursday, the situation in the Middle East was volatile, complex and dangerous, But he was confident that it could be solved.

Conflicts are created, conducted and sustained by human beings. There's no such thing as a conflict that can't be ended. They can be ended by human beings. I saw it happen during his work in Northern Ireland, he said.

Mitchell is expected to help negotiate a sustainable cease-fire between Israel and Hamas. Israel invaded Hamas-controlled Gaza earlier this month in what they called an operation to stop rockets from being fired into Israeli territory.

I believe deeply that with committed and persevering, patient diplomacy it can happen in the Middle East.

George Mitchell was born in the mill town of Waterville, Maine, in 1933. He was the fourth of five children born to an Irish father and a Lebanese mother.