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Kerry To Meet Russian Foreign Minister In Berlin Next Week

A meeting between the new U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and his Russian counterpart will take place next week in German capital Berlin.

Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov have agreed to meet in Berlin on February 26, US State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland said in a statement on Thursday.

"Secretary Kerry and Foreign Minister Lavrov will discuss a wide range of bilateral and international issues," she added. The statement did not specify the agenda of talks.

It will be Kerry's first meeting with Lavrov in his new capacity as US Secretary of State.

Kerry is set to leave Washington on Sunday for an extensive nine-nation tour of Europe and the Middle East.

His itinerary includes stops in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, and concludes on March 6.

Announcing the tour earlier this week, Nuland termed Kerry's first overseas trip since he replaced Hillary Clinton on President Barack Obama's second term as a "listening tour," during which he can touch base with key allies and to focus on the upheavals in the Arab world.

Russia vehemently opposes the development of a US-led Europe missile defense system, fearing that the NATO shield would target its nuclear missiles. But Washington repeatedly says that it has no intention or capability to undermine Russia's strategic stability.

by RTT Staff Writer

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