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Clinton To Visit Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia


U.S. -- Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks to the media after releasing the 2011 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, at the Department of State, in Washington, DC, 24May2012

U.S. -- Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks to the media after releasing the 2011 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, at the Department of State, in Washington, DC, 24May2012

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will arrive in Yerevan on June 4 at the start of what will be her second tour of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia in less than two years.

Clinton will visit the three South Caucasus states as part of an eight-day trip to countries in northern Europe, the Caucasus and Turkey, which she is due to start on Thursday.

She will discuss “regional security, democracy, economic development and counterterrorism” in Yerevan, Baku and Tbilisi, the U.S. State Department said on May 25. The State Department also said Clinton would meet with leaders from civil society groups in all three of the countries.

The Armenian Foreign Ministry announced on Monday that Clinton will hold talks with President Serzh Sarkisian and Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian on “a broad range of issues relating to the development and deepening of the U.S.-Armenian friendly partnership.” A ministry statement said they will also discuss the unresolved Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and “regional and international issues of mutual interest.”

Clinton already toured the region in July 2010. U.S.-backed efforts to normalize Armenia’s relations with Turkey were high on the agenda of her talks in the Armenian capital. She publicly praised Sarkisian’s position on the issue as “very statesmanlike and very impressive” and said the onus is on Ankara to revive the normalization process.

The chief U.S. diplomat also met with Armenian journalists, human rights campaigners and other civic activists at the time. She promised continued U.S. support for their activities.
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