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Kerry says he hopes to meet Russian FM next week

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry says he hopes to meet Russia's top diplomat next week in Europe to discuss the Ukraine crisis.

Kerry told reporters Thursday at the State Department he is trying to arrange a meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (SEHR'-gay LAHV'-rahf) on the sidelines of a nuclear security summit.

His comments come as the Obama administration readies new sanctions in response to Russia's annexation of the strategic Crimea peninsula. The U.S. and EU have already imposed sanctions on Russian officials.

Kerry and Lavrov have held multiple face-to-face and telephone conversations about Ukraine in the past week. But none of them have been successful in easing the crisis.

President Barack Obama will also attend the nuclear summit.

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