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Secretary of State Kerry returning home after delivering tough messages in Iraq, Afghanistan

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is headed for home after making clandestine journeys to Iraq and Afghanistan, where he delivered a stern warning to Iraqi leaders about Syria and sought to patch up differences with Afghanistan's president.

Kerry was flying back to Washington on Tuesday from Paris, having piggy-backed off President Barack Obama's trip to the Middle East to make unannounced stops in Baghdad and Kabul. In Iraq on Sunday, he told Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki that shipments of Iranian weapons and fighters through Iraqi territory must stop. In Afghanistan on Monday, he put on a show of unity with President Hamid Karzai, whose recent anti-American comments had angered U.S. officials.

During the trip, Kerry also held meetings with Israeli and Palestinian leaders and saw Pakistan's army chief.