The United States says all members of the U.N. Security Council support a proposal to send 5,500 peacekeepers to South Sudan in order to protect civilians from worsening violence. The Security Council is due to vote Tuesday afternoon on a resolution to transfer troops from other U.N. missions in Africa following the proposal from U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon.

December 22, 2013

The 50-year-old Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), once considered the best-funded insurgency in the world, is at its smallest and most vulnerable state in decades, due in part to a CIA covert action program that has helped Colombian forces kill at least two dozen rebel leaders, according to interviews with more than 30 former and current U.S. and Colombian officials.

US President Barack Obama has warned South Sudan that Washington and its allies would cut aid to the country over any attempted military coup, amid growing fears of civil war. Obama also urged South Sudan's leaders to help protect US personnel and citizens in the conflict-ravaged country, after four US military service members were wounded when their aircraft were fired upon on Saturday during a mission to evacuate American citizens.

They were an unlikely pair to lead the world’s newest nation — from different tribal groups and different regions, having taken vastly different paths to power. President Salva Kiir, a field commander with little formal education, was known for his black ­cowboy hat. His vice president, Riek Machar, had earned a doctorate in Britain and preferred Western suits.

The United States and its allies will have ways to reimpose sanctions on Iran if the Islamic Republic is caught making bombs after striking a deal to freeze its nuclear program, national security adviser Susan Rice said on Sunday. In an interview on the CBS news program "60 Minutes," Rice rejected the idea that, once relaxed, the economic sanctions on Tehran would be hard to reinstate.

Cuban President Raul Castro on Saturday called on the United States to establish civilized relations with his country, recognizing a new tone in bilateral talks on secondary issues while reiterating that the country's political and economic system were non-negotiable. The United States and Cuba have appeared more positive of late as talks around immigration, postal services, disaster prevention and other security issues have taken place, with officials from both countries cautiously welcoming each other's pragmatism and seriousness in interviews with Reuters.

A hot topic these days in D.C. is the quest for what is quickly becoming the foreign policy holy grail — a U.S. foreign policy strategy towards the People’s Republic of China. The quest in many respects makes sense. After the declaration of a “pivot” to Asia, many in America’s foreign policy community expected a major push by the Obama Administration to clearly define some sort of strategy towards Beijing incorporating a number of broad areas of importance — defense, economic, and cultural interactions.

Thailand’s main opposition Democrat Party said Saturday that it would boycott February’s general election, deepening a weeks-long political crisis over protesters’ efforts to oust the government and force political reforms. The party’s leader, former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, announced the boycott after a meeting of party executives. He said the decision was made in order to ensure that Thailand’s government will “represent the people once again.”