Biden heads to Europe, will discuss Syria with world leaders
Vice President Joe Biden heads to Europe this evening, where in his first trip abroad since starting his second term, the crisis in Syria will be at the top of his agenda.
"The Syrian regime has by any measure completely failed to maintain its own domestic and international legitimacy," Ben Rhodes, deputy National Security Adviser for the Obama administration, said today on a conference call previewing Biden's trip.
The vice president's three-nation trip begins in Germany, where on Friday he will meet with Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. They're expected to discuss a broad range of issues, including the global economy, Syria, Iran, and energy and climate change.
On Saturday, Biden delivers remarks at the Munich Security Conference. On the margins of the conference, he'll have a number of meetings with world leaders, including Syrian opposition leader Moaz al-Khatib. Biden will also meet with Lakhdar Brahimi, the United Nations and Arab League special representative for Syria, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Russia is Syria's strongest international ally, though the U.S. maintains that no amount of international support could help keep Syrian President Bashar Assad in power.
On Monday, Biden will meet with French President Francois Hollande to talk about Syria, the eurozone, as well as the United States' support for the French and African mission in Mali.
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