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  • Secretary Kerry at the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council

    Secretary Kerry at the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council

    President Obama and I support the HRC for a simple reason: We believe in its mission and its possibilities. We know that at best this council can be a valuable means for reminding every nation of its commitments and obligations and holding countries accountable when they fail to meet international standards. It can help countries to respond successfully to respond to domestic human rights challenges, as we’ve seen firsthand in Cote d’Ivoire and elsewhere, and advance global norms like LGBT rights. It provides a means for self-evaluation on the part of individual nations, including through the universal periodic review process. And we have seen this type of self-examination and engagement with the international community actually produce real process on the ground.

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  • Secretary Kerry Welcomes Randy Berry, the First-Ever Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBT Persons

    Secretary Kerry Welcomes Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBT Persons Randy Berry

    So here today we’re underscoring a very important message. The United States of America remains unwavering in our commitment to advance the human rights of all human beings, and that includes LGBT persons prominently, appropriately, equal to everybody else here at home and around the world.

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  • Assistant Secretary Malinowski at MERI talking about democracy and inclusion

    Seizing the Post-ISIL Opportunity for Democracy and Inclusion

    This is a time when people are threatened, so it's a time for patriotism. It's a time for coming together, it's not necessarily a time for open and critical debate about what the government is doing. But I would ask you to consider that this is perhaps particularly the time when one needs those institutions of openness and democracy and tolerance of different opinions to be strong.

    We don't need limits on free expression to fight Daeesh; that should be clear. On the contrary, in every part of the world, in every part of Iraq, it is precisely civil society, it is people who challenge authority and dogmatic ways of thinking, people who work together across lines of religion and party and ethnicity to solve problems, who are in the best defense against extremism.

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Top Stories

Press Conference
Secretary Kerry at a Press Availability
Mar 2, 2015 | Secretary of State John Kerry

We’ve also worked hard to try to create new mechanisms that explore and address serious human rights infringements on the freedom of assembly, expression, and religion, and the rights of LGBT people. And as many of you know, just the other day, I had the privilege of making the appointment for Randy Berry as the first special envoy for global LGBT rights for the State Department. ...Read More
Press Release
The U.S. Congratulates Lesotho on Peaceful Election
Mar 2, 2015 | Secretary of State John Kerry

The United States shares the hopes of the Basotho that these elections will allow Lesotho to move beyond a period of political uncertainty and strengthen national unity. This commitment is essential to provide a foundation for an effective, accountable government that serves the needs of the people. ...Read More
Press Release
Secretary Kerry on South Sudan Negotiations
Mar 2, 2015 | Secretary of State John Kerry

Legitimacy is not a presumed right of any government. It is conferred by the people, and it is sustained only by demonstrating leadership to protect and serve all citizens—responsibilities the government has neglected. The opposition has likewise failed to choose peace or make the hard choices required of leaders. Both President Kiir and Riek Machar have promised time and again that they would negotiate a transitional government under the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) process, but have failed to make the compromises needed. ...Read More
To Resolve this Crisis, Russia must Decide to Support Peace
Feb 26, 2015 | Deputy Chief of Mission, Kate M. Byrnes

The separatist movement at this point is a de facto extension of the Russian military and an instrument of Russian national power. The Russian military has put in place a robust command structure in eastern Ukraine, ranging from Russian General Officers overseeing operations down to junior officers. Russian personnel conduct communications, intelligence gathering, direct military operations, and help correct artillery fire. Separatist fighters have publicly acknowledged that they are operating under instructions from Moscow. ...Read More
Youth Programs at the Forefront of Civic Engagement
Feb 26, 2015 | Deputy Assistant Secretary for Professional and Cultural Exchanges, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Mara Tekach

Alumni from around the world convene for a YES global conference.

This week, 100 Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) program high school students representing 35 countries with significant Muslim populations brought their enthusiasm to Washington, D.C. They arrived at the State Department to participate in a weeklong Civic Education workshop that includes interactive seminars to learn about the U.S. system of government. Throughout their week ...Read More

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