One of America's longest serving, most experienced and highest-ranking diplomats, Deputy Secretary Bill Burns, who led secret talks with Iran in recent years, is to retire this year, officials said Friday. President Barack Obama praised Burns for his 32-year career saying he had "relied on him for candid advice and sensitive diplomatic missions. Secretary of State John Kerry said Burns, who had agreed to put his retirement on hold when Kerry took up his post in 2013, had had an "enormous impact and influence in untold ways." Burns, who has worked under 10 secretaries of state, was "a diplomat's diplomat, with this terrifically rare mix of strategic vision and operational skill," Kerry said in a statement."
US reporter Glenn Greenwald returned to his homeland Friday for the first time since he helped expose Washington's vast electronic spying network, warning that more revelations are yet to come. Greenwald, who maintains regular contact with fugitive former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, flew into New York with filmmaker Laura Poitras to receive a journalism award for their coverage. Greenwald and Poitras had feared they could be detained upon arrival but told reporters at a Manhattan hotel that, while US officials "deliberately created" a sense of risk, they faced no problem.