Kerry on a weeklong trip to Middle East and Africa



Washington: With focus on Syria and Israel-Palestine conflict US Secretary of State John Kerry would travel to the Middle East and Africa next week with stops in Muscat, Amman, Jerusalem, Ramallah and Addis Ababa.

Kerry will travel to Muscat on May 21, where he will meet senior Omani officials to discuss a range of bilateral and regional issues, State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki said yesterday.

On May 22, Kerry will visit Amman, where he will meet key international partners to further explore ways that the international community can work towards bringing together both sides of the conflict and developing a path toward a negotiated political solution to the crisis in Syria,

On May 23-24, Kerry will travel to Jerusalem and Ramallah.

"In Jerusalem, he will meet with Israeli leaders, and in Ramallah he will meet with the Palestinian leadership," she said.

"These meetings are to follow-up on ongoing discussions as we continue to assess how best we can support the parties in getting back to the table and in having dialogue leading to peace.

"We remain committed to working with the parties to achieve a lasting peace through direct negotiations," Psaki said.

Kerry will then travel May 24-25 to Addis Ababa, where he will meet with senior Ethiopian officials to discuss bilateral issues and participate in the Golden Jubilee of the Organization of African Unity at the African Union Summit.

He will also meet with African leaders attending the summit to discuss a range of regional, transnational, and country-specific topics.

On May 26, Kerry will depart Addis Ababa and return to Amman, where he will participate in the World Economic Forum.

PTI