Michele Kelemen

A former NPR Moscow bureau chief, Michele Kelemen now covers the State Department and Washington's diplomatic corps. Her reports can be heard on all NPR News programs, including Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

In her latest beat, Kelemen has been traveling with Secretary of State John Kerry and Hillary Clinton before him, tracking the Obama administration's broad foreign policy agenda from Asia to the Middle East. She also followed President Bush's Secretaries of State Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell and was part of the NPR team that won the 2007 Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Award for coverage of the war in Iraq.

As NPR's Moscow bureau chief, Kelemen chronicled the end of the Yeltsin era and Vladimir Putin's consolidation of power. She recounted the terrible toll of the latest war in Chechnya, while also reporting on a lighter side of Russia, with stories about modern day Russian literature and sports.

Kelemen came to NPR in September 1998, after eight years working for the Voice of America. There, she learned the ropes as a news writer, newscaster and show host.

Michele earned her Bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania and a Master's degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies in Russian and East European Affairs and International Economics.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: U.S. and Cuban officials are meeting in Havana today. It's their first get together since two major events that could shape U.S.-Cuba relations going forward - the death of Fidel Castro and the election of Donald Trump. Trump has criticized the Obama administration's approach to the communist island and has vowed to get a better deal from Havana. Cubans who have benefited from Obama's policy are nervous and have...

When President Obama began opening up to Cuba two years ago, reversing U.S. policy that dated back more than a half-century, he relied on executive orders that did not require the blessing of Congress. That means President-elect Donald Trump could easily undo Obama's actions. And on the campaign trail, Trump said he would "terminate" Obama's orders that opened the way for travel and trade with Cuba, unless the U.S. could negotiate better terms. Trump's election victory, Fidel Castro's death...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST: Fidel Castro's death comes at a time of a changing relationship between the U.S. and Cuba and a changing administration here at home. Nearly two years ago, the Obama administration and Castro's brother, Raul, announced a prisoner exchange and agreed to restore diplomatic relations after decades of hostility. How much of a role did Fidel Castro play? That's a question NPR's Michele Kelemen put to Cuba-watchers....

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: Happy Thanksgiving. Congressional Republicans are urging the Obama administration not to loosen sanctions on Iran during Obama's last two months in office. That's because President-elect Donald Trump wants to renegotiate the nuclear deal with Iran. NPR's Michele Kelemen reports on how Obama might still try to strengthen a deal that is central to his foreign policy legacy. MICHELE KELEMEN, BYLINE: When the Treasury...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: President-elect Donald Trump has tapped South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. Haley is one of the first women he's picked for a top-level position in his cabinet. She's the daughter of Indian immigrants. And she's popular in South Carolina, but she has little foreign policy experience. NPR's Michele Kelemen takes a closer look at the governor and what's ahead for her if...

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST: President-elect Donald Trump's victory is causing concern at the U.N. Outgoing Secretary General Ban Ki-moon steps down at the end of the year. And Trump has promised to drop out of the Paris climate change agreement, which is Ban Ki-moon's biggest legacy. That's not all U.N. diplomats are worried about these days as NPR's Michele Kelemen reports. MICHELE KELEMEN, BYLINE: Technically, the U.N. says the U.S....

Updated at 7:33 p.m. ET Since this story was written, the State Department said it was contacted by the president-elect's transition representatives. The phone call was apparently limited to a discussion about logistics. The State Department's transition office has been quiet, as Trump and his top advisers remain in New York. State Department spokesman John Kirby says officials stand ready and willing to offer any briefing materials to the Trump team, but so far, there just haven't been any...

The State Department has opened up a transition office, but that ground-floor corner office in Washington's Foggy Bottom neighborhood is quiet for now as diplomats await news of their new boss. Donald Trump's pick for secretary of state could tell a lot about the direction he will take U.S. foreign policy. At the moment, all eyes are on former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a longtime friend of Trump and strong backer throughout the campaign. He's an unlikely candidate with little foreign...

One of the promises Donald Trump made on the campaign trail was to dismantle or renegotiate the U.S. deal with Iran that limits its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief. If he makes good on that promise, it won't be the first time a Republican administration has walked away from an arms deal negotiated by Democrats. In 1994 the Clinton administration struck a deal with North Korea that essentially would freeze Pyongyang's nuclear program in exchange for aid. The so-called Agreed...

On this Election Day, Secretary of State John Kerry is traveling just about as far from Washington, D.C., as he can go. He's on his way to Antarctica, becoming the first secretary of state to visit all seven continents after logging well over a million miles while in office. Kerry is visiting McMurdo Station , a U.S. research center in the Ross Sea — and, yes, the South Pole, too. His spokesman, John Kirby, says the purpose is to talk to researchers and scientists before he joins climate...

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