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.
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Thursday that his greatest achievement at the helm of the world’s biggest international organization was last year’s climate change accord in Paris, and he expressed open frustration that Republicans in the U.S. continue to obstruct President Obama and to politicize the subject.
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The Obama administration has dented the Islamic State’s money-making operations with airstrikes against the terror group’s oil-smuggling empire and blacklisting its known financial facilitators from the international banking system.
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: U.S. leaders must be prepared to fight extremism and radical jihad emanating from the Middle East for “decades,” says a retired Marine Corps four-star general who has spent the past decade on the military and diplomatic battlefields of America’s war on terrorism.
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.
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.
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.
Sudan is eager to forge closer ties with American and European intelligence agencies, possibly acting as a hub for Western-led counterterrorism operations against the Islamic State and other indigenous Islamic extremist groups, in a bid to ease U.S. economic sanctions that have been in place for decades.
Azerbaijan’s top diplomat in Washington said the U.S. must do more to deal with rising instability in his region, lest tensions that have already drawn in both Turkey and Russia spiral into more violence like the clashes that rocked the Nagorno-Karabakh region earlier this month.
NEWSMAKER INTERVIEW: The U.S. government’s international media operations grossly lack funding to counter effectively the rising global blitz of state-sponsored propaganda from Russia, China and other rivals, says the head of the federal board that oversees such Washington-financed outlets as Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and Voice of America.