Special Briefing via Telephone with Senior State Department Officials

Moderator:  Greetings to everyone from the U.S. European Media Hub in Brussels.  I would like to welcome our participants dialing in from around the world and thank all of you for joining this discussion.

Today we are pleased to be joined by the Department spokesperson, Morgan Ortagus; as well as Brian Hook, Special Representative for Iran and Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of State; and David Schenker, Assistant Secretary of the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs.

We will begin today’s call with opening remarks, and then we will turn to your questions.  And we will do our best to get to as many as possible in the time that we have, which is approximately 20 minutes.

As a reminder, today’s call is on the record.  And with that, I will turn it over to the State Department spokesperson, Morgan Ortagus.

Ms. Ortagus:  Well, thanks, everyone, for having me.  It’s not often that I get to dial into the Media Hub calls.  Given the importance of the events over the weekend, I wanted to make sure to be here with my colleagues, Brian and Dave Schenker, who will be speaking to you, and of course we’re going to take your questions, and – and of course we’ll answer as well as we can.  So thanks again to everyone for dialing in.

The Secretary was on U.S. news media this morning, for all of you who haven’t seen it, talking about the actions that the U.S. took over the weekend.  And both he and Brian Hook and myself will also be on media later today.