NAIROBI (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Monday he was pleased to see progress in reforming Kenya's electoral commission and urged that differences be resolved through peaceful means in lead up to the 2017 elections.

"Let me just emphasize that holding a free and fair, peaceful credible election is a critical step in consolidating Kenya's democracy," he told a news conference.

Kerry said that the United States would provide $25 million this year to help prepare for the vote.

(Writing by George Obulutsa; Editing by Louise Ireland)