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  • Statement by the President on the Signing of the Bilateral Security Agreement and NATO Status of Forces Agreement in Afghanistan (September 30, 2014)

    Today we mark an historic day in the U.S.-Afghan partnership that will help advance our shared interests and the long-term security of Afghanistan. After nearly two years of hard work by negotiating teams on both sides, earlier today in Kabul the United States and the new Afghan Government of National Unity signed a Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA). This agreement represents an invitation from the Afghan Government to strengthen the relationship we have built over the past 13 years and provides our military service members the necessary legal framework to carry out two critical missions after 2014: targeting the remnants of Al Qaeda and training, advising, and assisting Afghan National Security Forces. The signing of the BSA also reflects the implementation of the Strategic Partnership Agreement our two governments signed in May 2012. 

  • Under US leadership, world will defeat ISIS By John F. Kerry (September 26, 2014)

    THE UNITED STATES has long faced threats from a lethal brand of terrorism that perverts one of world’s great religions. We have been relentless in targeting Al Qaeda and its affiliates, but the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, now poses a profound and unique threat to the entire world. What we are confronting is nothing less than a violent extremist enterprise. It has employed violence, intimidation, and genocidal brutality to impose its will across large swaths of Syria and Iraq. The Islamic State controls more territory than Al Qaeda ever has, which means it has access to money on an unprecedented scale to finance its mayhem. With American leadership, the world is responding with a unity that shows these criminals that we will not allow them to divide us or force their nihilistic vision on helpless people, regardless of ethnicity, religion, or nationality. On Wednesday, the United Nations Security Council unanimously passed a resolution condemning the gross abuses carried out by the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. 

  • Statement by Secretary Kerry - The Return of the M/V Cape Ray to Portsmouth, Virginia (September 21, 2014)

    I am proud to welcome home the men and women of the M/V Cape Ray, the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration vessel and salute all the dedicated professionals who worked on the Cape Ray, carrying out a critical national security mission, the first time that chemical weapons were removed from a live conflict and destroyed aboard a ship on the open sea. After the call for a novel ship-board hydrolysis system, the Cape Ray was prepared for the mission in just five months. Despite initial projections that the work would take as long as three months, the operations on board took only 42 days.  

  • MEDIA NOTE: Building International Support to Counter ISIL (September 19, 2014)

    The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has dramatically undermined stability in Iraq, Syria and the broader Middle East, and poses a threat to international peace and security. ISIL continues to commit gross, systematic abuses of human rights and violations of international law, including indiscriminate killing and deliberate targeting of civilians, mass executions and extrajudicial killings, persecution of individuals and entire communities on the basis of their identity, kidnapping of civilians, forced displacement of Shia communities and minority groups, killing and maiming of children, rape and other forms of sexual violence, along with numerous other atrocities.  

  • The Transatlantic Trends 2014 -- Remarks by Victoria Nuland, Assistant Secretary, Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs German Marshall Fund (September 10, 2014)

    Thanks to Karen, thanks to Ivan. It’s great to be back at GMF. Karen, I miss you in government every day. But I know that you are bringing your energy and your vision and your creativity to an equally worthy institution, GMF. And it is a pleasure to be here for my first Transatlantic Trends since becoming Assistant Secretary. As I was about to say, it was terrific to see that a GMF alumna, Foreign Minister Mogherini delivered the report in Brussels. It seems like you have to do a stint in GMF if you want to accede to the highest levels of the EU these days. We all consider this Transatlantic Trends report to be a report card on us, particularly those of us who are charged with protecting and defending this incredibly precious transatlantic relationship, the NATO relationship, the U.S.-EU relationship, the relationship from, as we used to say, Vancouver to Vladivostok and as we hope to continue to be able to say as we move forward. 

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