FW: Print Pool Report #3a

From: Leslie, Katie [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Monday, March 14, 2016 11:36 AM
To: Gabriel, Brian
Subject: Print Pool Report #3a

Sec. of State John Kerry introduced POTUS at roughly 11:10 AM to the ambassadors and other state department leaders gathered for the Chief of Missions conference.

Kerry praised POTUS for "restoring" America's reputation abroad, and specifically for his work on a variety of fronts including the Iran nuclear deal, the Paris climate talks, the renewal of diplomatic relations with Cuba and brokering TPP.

POTUS took the stage shortly after, wearing what appears to be a charcoal gray suit, white button down and striped tie. He quipped that he was "in the neighborhood" before adding that, actually, the diplomats gathered there were in said neighborhood.

He began with platitudes for Kerry, noting the Secretary is "tireless; we don't know exactly what he takes" as the audience of a few hundred (have not conducted official head count) laughed.

He said Kerry has made 82 foreign trips, with five countries in two days alone. Also said Kerry is known for loving fine restaurants.

He then got down to business at hand, telling the crowd:

"There are those who criticize our commitment to diplomacy, for investing so much effort in trying to resolve conflicts that seem intractable.

"Here’s the truth: conflicts and wars do not end on their own. Breakthroughs don't just happen. Agreements don’t write themselves. It takes diplomacy, being willing to sit down with others, sometimes with adversaries, peoples whose values are contradictory to our own. But as John says, we have to try."

He said those working for the state department abroad ultimately determine "people's impressions of the United States."

POTUS acknowledged that those in this line of work at times pay the "ultimate sacrifice" for their work and referenced slain Ambassador Chris Stevens and others lost including two locally employed staffers in Pakistan. (Check official transcript for more.)

More to come.

--

Katie Leslie

Washington Correspondent

The Dallas Morning News

office: (202) xxx-xxx-xxxx

mobile: (646) xxx-xxx-xxxx

@katieleslienews

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