Chairman's Press

September 04, 2012

Kerry Statement on Colombian Peace Negotiations with FARC

Washington, DC - Senator Kerry made the following comments today after Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos announced upcoming peace negotiations with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). "Colombians have suffered for far too long from the violence and insecurity associated with its decades-long internal armed conflict. President Santos has taken the difficult steps toward negotiating a political solution and has indicated that lessons learned from prior peace talks will be ta… Continue Reading


August 04, 2012

Kerry Statement on Sudan, South Sudan Oil Agreement

Washington, DC - Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, made the following statement today after the African Union High-Level Implementation Panel, led by President Thabo Mbeki, announced that South Sudan and Sudan have reached an agreement on the transit of oil. "A lot of people said this couldn't happen and they were dead wrong. This is a clear and bold step toward peace and the promise of an economic lifeline for both countries. While other contentious issues, inclu… Continue Reading


August 01, 2012

Kerry Meets with Chinese Human Rights Activist Chen Guangcheng

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement after meeting with Chen Guangcheng, a Chinese lawyer and human rights activist who was arrested, jailed, and later confined to his home and brutally beaten for challenging a government policy. He eventually escaped from home confinement and sought help from the U.S. embassy and is now residing in the United States. "If you're not inspired by Chen Guangcheng's journey, you'… Continue Reading


August 01, 2012

At Hearing, Kerry Stresses Urgency, Complicated Options in Syria

Washington, DC - This morning, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) delivered the following statement at a hearing that explored possible next steps for U.S. policy on Syria. "We are currently looking at a dangerous and downward spiral in the heart of the Middle East, and one that has the potential - not necessarily, but certainly the potential - to threaten the security of key regional friends and partners, including Israel, but other countries also, and it has profou… Continue Reading


July 31, 2012

Kerry Statement on Nomination of Ambassadors to Afghanistan, Pakistan

Washington, DC - This morning, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) delivered the following statement on the nominations of James B. Cunningham to be Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and Richard G. Olson to be Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. "The signing of the Strategic Partnership Agreement earlier this year marked the beginning-not the end-of a new phase of U.S. engagement in Afghanistan," said Sen. Kerry in his statement. "As interna… Continue Reading


July 31, 2012

Chairman Kerry Announces Plan for Additional Law of the Sea Hearings Next round to be held in the fall following August Recess

Washington, DC - Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA), today announced that he plans to hold additional hearings in the fall to continue educating members and the public on the importance of the Law of the Sea Treaty for the U.S. economy and national security. "The Foreign Relations Committee has held a series of educational hearings about the Law of the Sea Treaty this year. It's an important effort and thus far it's been illustrative about the unprecedented and some w… Continue Reading


July 26, 2012

In Bi-Partisan Vote, Foreign Relations Committee Passes Disabilities Treaty

Washington, DC - On the 22nd anniversary of the landmark passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Chairman John Kerry and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed a resolution of advice and consent to Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Treaty Doc. 112-7). The resolution was amended and passed by a strong bi-partisan vote of 13 to 6. The Convention is an international agreement for protecting the rights of individuals with disabilities. It sets broad goals of aut… Continue Reading


July 26, 2012

Kerry Statement Markup of Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Washington, DC - On the 22nd anniversary of the landmark passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Chairman John Kerry made the following statement during a meeting of the Foreign Relations Committee to consider a resolution of advice and consent to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Treaty Doc. 112-7). The resolution was amended and passed by a strong bi-partisan vote of 13 to 6. "I've heard from countless advocates on this issue-from various places; from the Per… Continue Reading


July 26, 2012

In Bi-Partisan Vote, Foreign Relations Committee Passes Disabilities Treaty

Washington, DC - On the 22nd anniversary of the landmark passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Chairman John Kerry and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed a resolution of advice and consent to Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Treaty Doc. 112-7). The resolution was amended and passed by a strong bi-partisan vote of 13 to 6. The Convention is an international agreement for protecting the rights of individuals with disabilities. It sets broad goals of aut… Continue Reading


July 24, 2012

Kerry Meets with Sir Elton John, Annie Lennox, UNAIDS Director Michel Sidibé to Discuss AIDS Research, Investments and Policies

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, met with Sir Elton John, Annie Lennox, and UNAIDS Director Michel Sidibé who were in town for the International AIDS Conference. During the meeting they discussed current investments in research, policies and next steps for fighting the AIDS epidemic. They also discussed options for strengthening the PEPFAR and the Global Fund programs. "It wasn't long ago that an HIV/AIDS diagnosis was a death se… Continue Reading


July 23, 2012

Kerry Urges Global Investment in Prevention, Life-Saving Resources at AIDS 2012 Conference

Washington, DC - This morning, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) delivered the following remarks at the international AIDS 2012 conference. "Dramatic, life-saving improvements to HIV/AIDS care in this country and across the globe are well within our reach," said Sen. Kerry. "We only have to be bold enough to demand them, and wise enough to act-to transform today's hopes for 21st-century HIV/AIDS care into tomorrow's reality. But this takes money and tremendous effor… Continue Reading


July 23, 2012

Kerry Statement on the Death of Oswaldo Payá

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The following is a statement from Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, on the death of Oswaldo Payá: "Cuba has lost a valiant champion for tolerance, democracy and social responsibility. Oswaldo Payá's legacy will be an enduring inspiration to Cubans seeking freedom and democratic reforms. As a boy, Mr. Payá paid a personal price for rejecting Marxism and becoming a passionate advocate for peaceful, civic action. But that o… Continue Reading


July 19, 2012

Kerry on Russia, China Veto of UN Syria Resolution

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The following is a statement from Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, in response to Russia's and China's veto today of the United Nations Syria resolution: "Russia and China's veto of the Syria resolution is as surreal as it is dangerous. As Rome burns, they're worried about saving Nero. Bashar al-Assad and his supporters need to hear unequivocally from the international community that they are losing. They cannot be thrown a lifeline by hold-o… Continue Reading


July 17, 2012

Kerry Statement at Hearing on Human Trafficking

Washington, DC - This morning, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) delivered the following statement at a hearing entitled, "The Next Ten Years in the Fight Against Human Trafficking: Attacking the Problem with the Right Tools." The hearing explored the major factors that enable the ongoing proliferation of trafficking, and probed solutions for some of the most difficult problems associated with trafficking. It also allowed the Committee to establish the existing fact… Continue Reading


July 16, 2012

Kerry Statement on Release of Massachusetts Natives Kidnapped in Egypt

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator John Kerry (D-MA) issued the following statement today after confirming with State Department and Egyptian officials that the two Massachusetts natives who were kidnapped on Friday, July 13th while traveling in the Sinai Peninsula have been released. The two were traveling with other tourists on their way to Mount Sinai when their bus was stopped and, along with their tour guide, they were kidnapped. "What began as a sightseeing tour turned into an unimaginable nigh… Continue Reading


July 12, 2012

Disability Rights Advocates Urge Ratification of Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Washington, DC - Today at a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the "Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities," experts and interested parties from government and civil society expressed strong support for Senate ratification of the treaty. The Convention is an international agreement for the protection of the rights of individuals with disabilities, which sets broad goals of autonomy, equality, acceptance, and accessibility for individuals with disabilities. "Ratifying … Continue Reading


July 12, 2012

Kerry Statement: Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Washington, DC - This morning, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) delivered the following statement at a hearing analyzing the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Treaty Doc. 112-7). "Americans may not witness these discriminatory acts in our daily lives, but they sting our conscience from half a world away," said Sen. Kerry. "Ratifying the Convention would strengthen our hand as we push for higher standards internationally-standards to which all of… Continue Reading


July 12, 2012

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Report on Mexico, Reducing Extreme Violence

Washington, DC - Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) today released a staff report entitled, "Judicial and Police Reforms in Mexico: Essential Building Blocks for a Lawful Society." The report calls on the incoming Mexican and U.S. Administrations to expand their support for Mexico's reform of its judicial sector and police as the best means to reduce the high levels of violent crime in Mexico. The report was compiled by Senate Foreign Relations Committee majority sta… Continue Reading


July 09, 2012

Kerry Statement on Elections in Libya

Washington, DC - Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) made the following statement today in response to the outcome of the elections in Libya. "Libya has made an important step forward by holding elections. They are to be congratulated. It is hard to underestimate what an amazing year it's been for Libyans who went from four decades of autocracy to the green shoots of a democracy of their own choosing. This is only the beginning of a long process of building a more rep… Continue Reading


July 09, 2012

Kerry on First Anniversary of South Sudan’s Independence

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The following is a statement by Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, on the first anniversary of South Sudan's independence. "Last July 9th, against enormous odds, a new state was born, and a remarkable victory achieved for the people of South Sudan and their newly established government. Two nations emerged: a newly independent South Sudan and a greatly altered Sudan, and both have struggled since. In the face of significant provocation, South … Continue Reading

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