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US Secretary of State Meets British Prime Minister

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, left, meets with British Prime Minister David Cameron at 10 Downing Street in London on, Feb. 25, 2013.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met Monday at Downing Street with British Prime Minster David Cameron and Foreign Secretary William Hague.

Kerry is set to meet with other leaders in Germany, France, Italy, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar on his first overseas trip since becoming secretary.

The State Department says Syria will be a key topic of discussion when he meets with various international officials in what Kerry described as a "listening tour." He also plans to meet with the leadership of the Syrian opposition coalition.

While in Berlin, he is expected to meet with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov. Washington and Moscow have divergent stances on how to deal with Syria, and bilateral relations have cooled over U.S. plans to build a missile defense system in Europe.

The State Department says that in Paris, Kerry will discuss Washington's ongoing cooperation with France and other countries in an effort to stabilize Mali, the African country plagued by an Islamist insurgency.

In the Middle East, Kerry will meet with top Arab League officials to discuss challenges in the region and seek greater consensus on how to solve them.