U.S. Foreign Policy Correspondent
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Jul 12, 2013

Obama to speak with Putin on Friday, raise Snowden concerns

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama planned to raise U.S. concerns directly with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday about Moscow’s handling of former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, who is wanted in the United States for disclosing secret surveillance programs.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama and Putin would speak by phone about Snowden later in the day, a conversation that was set up in recent days as Washington seeks to persuade Moscow to send Snowden back to the United States to face espionage charges.

Jul 9, 2013

U.S. says encouraged by Egyptian transition plan

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Tuesday cautiously welcomed a plan from Egypt’s interim government to hold quick elections but did not address “the elephant in the room” of whether a military coup had taken place.

Less than a week after the army toppled President Mohamed Mursi and his Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s interim head of state Adli Mansour announced that parliamentary elections would be held in about six months, followed by presidential elections.

Jun 13, 2013

If U.S. does not arm Syria’s rebels, Arabs, Europeans may

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Among the consequences facing U.S. President Barack Obama if he decides against arming Syria’s rebels is that Arab and European states may step in more aggressively, perhaps further fracturing rebel forces.

Having watched government forces seize the strategic town of Qusair from the rebels last week, Obama’s senior national security advisers have held a series of meetings on what more, if anything, they are willing to do to help the opposition.

Jun 10, 2013

U.S. holds high-level meetings on Syria, including on arming rebels

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States could decide as early as this week whether to arm Syrian rebels, U.S. officials said on Monday, as Secretary of State John Kerry put off a Middle East trip to attend meetings on the subject.

The meetings are taking place as the battlefield has tilted against the rebels in the Syrian civil war as Lebanese Hezbollah has entered the fray on the side of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, helping his forces retake the strategic town of Qusair last week.

Jun 10, 2013

U.S. to weigh arming Syrian rebels, official says

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States could make a decision as early as this week on whether to arm Syrian rebels, U.S. officials said on Monday, as U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry put off a Middle East trip to attend meetings on the subject.

However, the U.S. government has debated for months whether to provide weaponry to the rebels in their civil war against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces and has so far decided against.

Jun 5, 2013

Genocide expert Power gets bigger platform at U.N.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Samantha Power, who won a Pulitzer Prize for her study of U.S. failure to prevent genocide and is seen as an advocate of an activist U.S. foreign policy, would get a bigger platform for her views as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.

The former journalist, Harvard University professor and White House national security staffer was chosen on Wednesday to serve in the high-profile post as U.S. President Barack Obama weighs whether to do more to end Syria’s civil war.

Jun 2, 2013

Kerry pushing for Middle East peace, but is he a Lone Ranger?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Four months into his term, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is trying, simultaneously, to end two of the world’s most intractable conflicts: the Syrian civil war and the struggle between Israel and the Palestinians.

The two issues, according to an aide, have consumed the vast majority of Kerry’s time and energy – he has already flown more than 100,000 miles to 23 countries, including four trips to Israel – since he took office February 1.

Jun 2, 2013

Analysis: Kerry pushing for Middle East peace, but is he a Lone Ranger?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Four months into his term, Secretary of State John Kerry is trying, simultaneously, to end two of the world’s most intractable conflicts: the Syrian civil war and the struggle between Israel and the Palestinians.

The two issues, according to an aide, have consumed the vast majority of Kerry’s time and energy – he has already flown more than 100,000 miles to 23 countries, including four trips to Israel – since he took office February 1.

May 28, 2013

Lavrov says convening Syria conference ‘a tall order’

PARIS (Reuters) – Holding a conference to end Syria’s civil war will be a “tall order”, Russia’s foreign minister said on Monday after talks with his U.S. counterpart, but he saw some chance of success.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said they would do their utmost to bring Syria’s warring parties to the table, as fighting intensified and new allegations of chemical weapons use surfaced.

May 27, 2013

Kerry, Lavrov meet to discuss Syrian peace talks

PARIS (Reuters) – The U.S. and Russian foreign ministers met on Monday to discuss a planned conference aimed at ending Syria’s civil war against a backdrop of widening regional violence and new allegations of chemical weapons use.

John Kerry and Sergey Lavrov began one-on-one discussions in Paris, a U.S. official said, with such issues as when to hold the meeting on Syria, how to bring the warring parties to the table and whether to include Iran all likely to be on the table.

    • 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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