Briefing Skipper: Afghanistan, START, Iran, North Korea, Chelsea’s nuptials
In which we scour the transcript of the State Department’s daily presser so you don’t have to. Here are the highlights of Monday’s press briefing by Department Spokesman (and OSCE representative nominee) Ian Kelly: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd Monday to discuss Afghanistan, Asia, and climate change. Later ...
In which we scour the transcript of the State Department's daily presser so you don't have to. Here are the highlights of Monday's press briefing by Department Spokesman (and OSCE representative nominee) Ian Kelly:
In which we scour the transcript of the State Department’s daily presser so you don’t have to. Here are the highlights of Monday’s press briefing by Department Spokesman (and OSCE representative nominee) Ian Kelly:
- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd Monday to discuss Afghanistan, Asia, and climate change. Later Monday she went to New York to receive an award at the Amsterdam News Educational Fund 100th Anniversary Gala and she also received the Eisenhower Award from Business Executives for National Security.
- Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg left for Athens Monday night to attend the OSCE foreign ministerial meeting. Clinton was supposed to go, but had to hang back because of Tuesday’s rollout of the administration’s new Afghanistan-Pakistan strategy and her testimony before Congress on Wednesday and Thursday. Clinton will go to Brussels on Thursday afternoon for the NATO ministerial meeting.
- Clinton spoke with 10 foreign ministers on Thanksgiving about Afghanistan, but Kelly would not confirm that she asked French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner for 1,500 new French troops there.
- Kelly said its now unlikely that State Department negotiators will be able to finish a follow on to the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) with Russia by the time it expires Dec. 5. "I think that what we’re saying now is that we’re hoping to get this draft agreement by the end of December. I don’t want to raise expectations necessarily that we’re going to be able to work out everything by this Saturday," he said.
- The IAEA offer for Iran to have its uranium enriched outside of the country is "still on the table," Kelly said, despite that IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei said that talks with Iran over the proposal were at a "dead end." "if we don’t get a positive response, we’re going to start shifting our focus over to the other track, the track of pressure," Kelly said, not specifically endorsing the conventionally wise end of the year deadline.
- Kelly said he was not aware of statements by North Korea’s leaders that they are planning to announce they will return to the Six Party Talks when Ambassador Stephen Bosworth goes to Pyongyang next week, despite reports in the Asian press.
- Kelly declined to comment on the news that Chelsea Clinton is engaged to her long time boyfriend Marc Mazvinsky.
Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at email@example.com.
Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.
A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.
Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C. Twitter: @joshrogin
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