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Less than a week after leaving the Middle East without securing a cease-fire, John Kerry indulged in a little retail therapy Thursday while on an official visit to India. The Secretary of State purchased three rugs while touring a market in New Delhi ahead of trade talks.

Kerry, who has blamed “misunderstandings” for the lack of progress in halting the violence in Gaza, was guided through the first floor of the Central Cottage Industries Emporium where goods on sale included sandalwood carvings, miniature rice art and painted marble. On the second floor he found a rug store whose proprietor showed him silk rugs and as well as wool. After much admiration of several different items, Kerry opted to purchase three dhurrie rugs including one from the Kashmir region. The Secretary of State arrived India on Wednesday, hopeful of persuading leaders there to sign a World Trade Organization deal that would liberalize global commerce.

Image: John Kerry
U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, third right, looks at carpets during a visit to the Central Cottage Industries Emporium in New Delhi, India, Thursday.Lucas Jackson / Pool via AP


- Alastair Jamieson with pool reporting