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Secretary of State John Kerry shakes hands with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliye after making statements before their meeting at the State Department in Washington, Wednesday, March 30, 2016. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Azerbaijan envoy defends country’s rights record after presidential visit

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The Obama administration’s decision to meet with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev on the sidelines of last month’s nuclear summit has sparked a debate over the country human rights record and the decision to welcome an authoritarian leader who has drawn heat from critics — including the U.S. State Department — for his record back home.

Pakistan and India face tension after an attack earlier this month on an Indian military base in Indian Kashmir that left many soldiers dead. (Associated Press)

Pakistan says India risks ‘self-destructive war’ by escalating Kashmir tensions

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The top Pakistani official in the volatile dispute over Kashmir warned in an interview that India is dangerously escalating a war of words over the divided territory between the two nuclear-armed powers, vehemently denying that Islamabad was behind a recent attack that killed 18 soldiers at an Indian military base there.

Rep. Michael T. McCaul of the House Committee on Homeland Security said President Obama's policies have failed to dent the Islamic State. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Michael McCaul blasts ‘willfully blind’ Obama for enabling Islamic State ‘terror surge’

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The Obama administration oversaw the 2011 takedown of al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden but has since failed to confront honestly the more dangerous rise of the Islamic State, according to the Republican head of the House Committee on Homeland Security, who worries that the president’s “tone-deaf” posture toward Islamist terrorism has damaged the intelligence community’s own assessment of the new group.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses a meeting with governors in Ankara, Turkey, Thursday, Sept. 8, 2016, Turkey's education ministry says 11,285 of its personnel have been suspended amid suspicions they may be linked to Turkey's outlawed Kurdish rebels. (Yasin Bulbul, Presidential Press Service, Pool photo via AP)

Turkish leader calls for U.S.-Turkey ‘joint operation’ in Syria

- The Washington Times

EXCLUSIVE: A key political ally of Turkey’s president says defeating the Islamic State in Syria will require U.S. troops joining Turkish military forces on the ground inside the war-torn nation — a move that would require a significant shift in the Obama administration’s current policy.

Related Articles

Pakistani Ambassador Jalil Abbas Jilani says his country's relationship with the U.S. is on a positive trajectory and is stronger than it has been than at any other point since the Osama bin Laden raid in May 2011. (Associated Press)

Pakistani diplomat Jalil Abbas Jilani seeks increased U.S. pressure on India

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The top Pakistani diplomat in Washington says he is optimistic about prospects for peace in Afghanistan after the U.S. troop pullout, but asserts that the Obama administration could and should be doing more to foster peace in South Asia by pressuring India to embrace economic and counterterrorism overtures from Islamabad.

"My father's approach to the most brutal and unambiguous social injustices during the civil rights struggle was rooted in nonviolence as a morally and tactically correct response," Martin Luther King III said in an interview with The Washington Times. "In no way do I, nor would my father, condone any 'ends justify the means' behavior." (Associated Press)

Martin Luther King III sees Ferguson riots, violence against police as setbacks

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: On the holiday commemorating his father's epic civil rights legacy, Martin Luther King III says he is dismayed by recent violence against police, the destructive protests in Ferguson and the trashing of a U.Va. fraternity falsely accused of sexual assault because they don't reflect his father's own approach to advocate for change peacefully.

Breitling Energy CEO Chris Faulkner downplays the dangers of fracking brought forth by environmentalists. (Lloyd Villas/The Washington Times)

U.S. oil surplus eases prices in global crises

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: Increased U.S. production is helping to create an oil surplus on world markets, driving down prices despite a myriad of threats to oil supplies, and doing more to crush Russia's economy than the sanctions imposed by the U.S. and European Union, said Chris Faulkner, chief executive of Breitling Energy.

Ozdil Nami, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Lloyd Villas/The Washington Times

Minister sees breakthrough 'in months' for long-split Cyprus

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The top diplomat from the Turkish-controlled side of Cyprus says the core differences between the divided island's Turkish and Greek communities could be resolved in a "matter of months," putting Cyprus' reunification in reach for the first time in four decades.

Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl says the Catholic Church, under Pope Francis, is focusing on how to "Live the Gospel," especially in a world of extreme inequality. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Cardinal Wuerl hits U.N. report on Catholic sex abuse scandal

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl, a longtime advocate for victims of pedophile priests, took aim this week at a recent U.N. commission report on the Catholic Church's child sex abuse scandal, saying it failed to recognize the progress the church has made in the past decade.

Speaking out: Lukman Faily, Iraqi ambassador to the United States, says the Obama administration is not as engaged in his country's future as was the Bush administration, but adds that sectarian divisions are not about to erupt into civil war. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Iraqi ambassador slams Obama, praises Bush

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: Iraq's ambassador to Washington says the Obama administration doesn't fully grasp the consequences of failing to more aggressively combat a surging al Qaeda threat inside his country, pointedly suggesting that President Obama has been less engaged with Baghdad than his predecessor.

ON THE HUNT: Dan Schneider, who has helped officials fill key federal positions, said, "I looked for the most aggressive, effective conservatives who will fight against the Obama agenda within the belly of Obama's federal beast." (Sean Sheridan/American Conservative Union)

New ACU director takes aim at debt, poverty, big government

- The Washington Times

NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The American Conservative Union's newly named executive director is setting an ambitious strategy, hoping to motivate and provide tools to conservatives that will help them reverse the growth of government, the mounting national debt and the spreading poverty he believes threaten the foundation of America's freedoms.

Texas Comptroller Susan Combs visited Capitol Hill to pitch her idea for independent species research. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Texas calls for aid to put science into the Endangered Species Act

- The Washington Times

SOLUTION MAKERS: A top Texas official says it's time to improve the science that determines which animals get listed under the federal Endangered Species Act, calling on Congress to create a $50 million fund for independent research that also would factor in the economic damage to communities when a species is designated for protection.

Newsmaker interview with Texas Comptroller Susan Combs, Washington, D.C., Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2013. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Texas comptroller hits GOP for alienating women

- The Washington Times

The top elected woman in Texas gave the Republican Party a tongue-lashing Wednesday, saying her party showed in this week's off-year elections that it can be clueless when it comes to connecting with women voters.