John Baird and John Kerry to meet in D.C.

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird speaks in front of the Monument to Fallen Diplomats in Ottawa,...

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird speaks in front of the Monument to Fallen Diplomats in Ottawa, Sept. 20, 2012. (Andre Forget/QMI Agency)

Bryn Weese, Senior Washington Correspondent

, Last Updated: 10:11 PM ET

WASHINGTON, D.C. - John, meet John.

The first bilateral meeting for America's new top diplomat, John Kerry, will be with Canada's Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird here Friday.

Kerry insisted his first meeting be with his Canadian counterpart, according to U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland.

"The secretary felt very strongly that our Canadian neighbour and ally should come first," Nuland told reporters Thursday.

Kerry was ceremoniously sworn in Wednesday, although he has officially been on the job for one week, and Friday's meeting here follows a 15-minute phone call between the two politicians last weekend.

"I look forward to working with Secretary Kerry to find new ways to create jobs, growth and opportunity on both sides of our shared border," Baird said in a statement Thursday. "Canada and the United States are friends, allies and partners on the economy, energy and the environment."


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