Secretary of State John Kerry speaks to the media during a meeting with Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Dipu Moni at the US State Department on May 17, 2013 in Washington, DC. (BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON (AP) - Secretary of State John Kerry is heading back to the Mideast this week to press the case for peace talks between Syrian rebels and President Bashar Assad's regime amid increasing signs the new U.S. strategy to halt the war is being undermined by Russia.
Kerry departs Monday for Oman. He then goes to Jordan, where he'll gather with America's closest European and Arab partners to discuss how to advance a political transition in Syria. Other stops include Israel, the West Bank and Ethiopia.
For Syria talks to succeed, the Obama administration is banking on Russia's help,
The U.S. and Russia have wrangled repeatedly while more than 70,000 Syrians have died. They now say they're cooperating to get Syria's government and the opposition to start talks in Geneva next month.
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5/20/2013 4:09:02 AM (GMT -4:00)