Clinton cancels Middle East trip because of ill health

WASHINGTON Mon Dec 10, 2012 11:11pm EST

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listens to a question during a joint news conference with Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny at the government building in Dublin December 6, 2012. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listens to a question during a joint news conference with Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny at the government building in Dublin December 6, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has canceled her trip to Morocco this week for a meeting on the future of Syria's opposition because of a stomach virus, the State Department said on Monday.

Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns will travel to the meeting in her place.

"Since she's still under the weather, we'll be staying put this week instead of heading to North Africa and the Middle East as originally planned," State Department spokesman Philippe Reines said in a statement.

"In her place, Deputy Secretary Burns will travel to Marrakech for the Friends of the Syrian People meeting. We will let you know when she shakes this bug and resumes a public schedule," he said.

Clinton had been due to join foreign ministers from allied nations in Morocco to discuss the 20-month old Syria crisis as rebels fighting to oust President Bashar al-Assad push forward on the battlefield and move to unify the political opposition.

The so-called Friends of Syria group is expected to focus on new moves to strengthen and legitimize the recently formed Syrian opposition coalition.

Clinton had planned to continue from Morocco to Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates.

(Reporting By Mohammad Arshad; editing by Christopher Wilson)

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Comments (6)
Yowser wrote:
Dear Secretary Clinton:

Please feel better soon!

Dec 11, 2012 12:44am EST  --  Report as abuse
speaker12 wrote:
I don’t know if you’ll ever feel better given that you are responsible for the deaths of four Americans in Libya. Shame, thy name is Hillary.

Dec 11, 2012 11:41am EST  --  Report as abuse
USAPragmatist wrote:
@speaker12 ‘blaming’ Secretary Clinton forthe deaths in Libya is the same as blaming the Bush admin for 9/11/01. In both situation the blame lies in the hands of the terrorists, unless of course you are a 9/11 truther or other conspiracy theory wacko.

Dec 11, 2012 12:57pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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