U.S. Foreign Policy Correspondent
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May 8, 2013

Kerry avoids criticism of Russia on rights record

MOSCOW (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met Russian human rights activists on Wednesday but disappointed many by avoiding any harsh criticism of the Kremlin’s record on civil liberties and democracy.

A day after talks in Moscow at which he and Russian officials agreed to try to bring Syria’s warring parties together to discuss ending a civil war, Kerry discussed with human rights campaigners what they say is a clampdown on dissent by President Vladimir Putin.

May 8, 2013

U.S., Russia seek new Syria peace talks; rebels skeptical

MOSCOW/BEIRUT (Reuters) – Russia and the United States agreed to seek new peace talks with both sides to end Syria’s civil war, but opposition leaders were skeptical on Wednesday of an initiative they fear might let President Bashar al-Assad to cling to power.

Visiting Moscow after Israel bombed targets near Damascus and as President Barack Obama faces renewed calls to arm the rebels, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Russia had agreed to try to arrange a conference as early as this month.

May 7, 2013

Russia, U.S. to convene Syria peace conference

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia and the United States agreed on Tuesday to convene an international conference, possibly by the end of this month, to try to end the civil war in Syria and prevent bloodshed tearing the country apart.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Secretary of State John Kerry announced the agreement after talks in Moscow, despite their countries’ differences over Syria, and said the Damascus government and the rebels fighting it should be invited.

May 7, 2013

Seeking Syria accord, Kerry tells Putin of common ground

MOSCOW (Reuters) – The U.S. secretary of state sought Russian help in ending Syria’s civil war on Tuesday, telling President Vladimir Putin in Moscow that common interest in a stable Middle East could bridge divisions among the big powers.

Putin, however, kept John Kerry waiting three hours before their meeting at the Kremlin, fiddled with a pen while his guest spoke and made no mention in his own public remarks of the conflict in Syria, which has generated some of the frostiest exchanges between Washington and Moscow since the Cold War.

May 6, 2013

Kerry to ‘make another stab’ at Syria deal with Russia

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will “make another stab” at seeing if the United States and Russia can work together to find a political solution to end Syria’s civil war when he visits Moscow this week, a senior U.S. official said on Monday.

Kerry departs for Moscow on Monday afternoon and is scheduled to see Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday to discuss a wide range of issues including the Iranian and North Korean nuclear programs, Afghanistan and U.S.-Russian trade.

May 3, 2013

Author Samantha Power being considered for U.S. diplomatic post

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Samantha Power, a Pulitzer Prize winning author, former White House aide and Harvard professor, is under consideration to be the U.S. State Department’s top human rights official, sources familiar with the matter said.

If chosen, Power, an outspoken defender of human rights who wrote a study of the U.S. government’s failure to prevent genocide in the 20th century, could become a strong voice in the administration for a more muscular U.S. role in protecting rights in such places as Syria, China and Sudan.

Apr 15, 2013

In Tokyo, Kerry defends U.S. strategic pivot to Asia

TOKYO (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry defended the re-orientation of U.S. foreign policy toward Asia on Monday as he ended a trip to the region dominated by concerns about North Korea’s nuclear programs.

The “rebalancing” of the United States toward Asia has caused unease in Beijing, which has tended to focus on the military dimensions of the strategy and to view it as a way to contain China’s rise.

Apr 14, 2013

Kerry says U.S. ready to ‘reach out’ to North Korea

TOKYO, April 14 (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John
Kerry on Sunday stressed the United States is willing to engage
with North Korea as long as it takes steps to give up nuclear
weapons.

He also vowed Washington would protect its Asian allies
against any provocative acts by the North, but said it wants a
peaceful solution to rising tensions in the region.

Apr 14, 2013

Pushing to rein in North Korea, U.S.’s Kerry to meet Japan leaders

TOKYO, April 14 (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John
Kerry arrived in Japan on Sunday, the last stop on an Asian tour
aimed at solidifying support for curbing North Korea’s nuclear
programme and reassuring U.S. allies after weeks of threats of
war from Pyongyang.

The North has threatened for weeks to attack the United
States and South Korea since new U.N. sanctions were imposed in
response to its latest nuclear arms test in February.
Speculation has mounted of a new missile launch or nuclear test.

Apr 14, 2013

U.S.’s Kerry lands in Japan in push to rein in North Korea

TOKYO, April 14 (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State John
Kerry arrived in Japan on Sunday, the last stop on an Asian tour
aimed at solidifying support for curbing North Korea’s nuclear
programme and reassuring U.S. allies after weeks of threats of
war from Pyongyang.

Kerry’s talks with his Japanese counterpart, Fumio Kishida,
coincide with preparations for the North’s biggest holiday of
the year on Monday, the Day of the Sun, the birth date of state
founder Kim Il-Sung – an occasion for pomp and perhaps a
military display.

    • About Arshad

      "I cover U.S. foreign policy for Reuters from a base at the State Department. I joined Reuters in 1988 and have worked as a correspondent in New York, Paris, Algiers and Washington, where I have covered the White House (1996-2002) and the State Department (2002-2005, 2006-present)."
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