When asked on Friday to give details on an upcoming peace summit, State Department Spokeswoman Jen Psaki awkwardly tried to dodge announcing the location of the international meeting. Psaki was informed by members of the press that President Obama and Secretary John Kerry had both announced or suggested the conference would be held in Geneva. After multiple attempts to omit a location, Psaki declared “I’ll stop being too cute about this” and said that a formal announcement will come from the United Nations.
QUESTION: Do you have a date and venue for the peace conference yet?
MS. PSAKI: The Geneva – the next Geneva 1, follow-up to Geneva 1 —
MS. PSAKI: — I should call it? We need a good name for it. I don’t have a date yet. We’re still in discussions with the UN and other partners about the timing of that, and we continue to shoot for early June.
QUESTION: Geneva, right? It will take place in Geneva?
MS. PSAKI: We don’t have any specifics on the location. Any announcement would come from the UN.
QUESTION: Really? The President —
QUESTION: On Google —
QUESTION: The President said Geneva yesterday. Did he screw up magnificently?
MS. PSAKI: Well, it’s a follow-up to Geneva 1.
QUESTION: He said talks in Geneva.
MS. PSAKI: Okay. Well, when we have a formal announcement to make, it will come from the UN, so I’ll let you all wait for that.
QUESTION: So you’re saying he was incorrect or what?
MS. PSAKI: I’m not saying that, Brad. I’m just telling —
QUESTION: I just don’t understand why you hide information —
MS. PSAKI: I’m just —
QUESTION: — when the President of the United States has given the name of the city.
MS. PSAKI: I’m just suggesting you wait for a formal announcement for all the details.
QUESTION: Okay. So the President, when he says something, it’s not formal enough for you? (Laughter.)
MS. PSAKI: Brad, thank you.
QUESTION: The Secretary himself in Rome referred to it as Geneva 2, so the exchange you had with Brad I think makes all of us think it’s not going to be in Geneva. Would you steer us away from that?
MS. PSAKI: I will stop being too cute about this. There will be a formal announcement. The obvious location for it is Geneva. It has been said by many people that it will be in Geneva. Because it is not our announcement to make, it is the UN’s announcement, I just wanted to refer to the official announcement.
QUESTION: Okay, okay. Thank you.