January 28, 2023

Secretary of State Blinken to Meet with French President Macron | Voice of America

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has arrived in France, his latest stop in a multination tour, where he will meet Friday with President Emmanuel Macron, following up on U.S. President Joe Biden’s recent meetings with allies in the region to boost transatlantic relations. 

“During this trip to engage with the United States’ oldest ally, Secretary Blinken will emphasize the importance of maintaining transatlantic cooperation, addressing our joint response to the ongoing health crisis, tackling the climate crisis, and highlighting the strength of our long-standing bilateral partnership,” the State Department said Thursday in a statement. 

France's President Emmanuel Macron addresses the media as he arrives on the first day of the EU summit at the European Council…
France’s President Emmanuel Macron addresses the media as he arrives on the first day of the EU summit at the European Council Building in Brussels, Belgium, June 24, 2021.

France continues to be “a steadfast partner in the fight against terrorism,” the State Department said, adding the two countries “agree on the need to hold Russia accountable for its aggressive and destabilizing activities, including in Ukraine.” 

The U.S. and France collaborate on issues like “human rights, economic coercion and corruption” to counter the People’s Republic of China’s efforts to “erode the values and institutions that undergird the rules-based international order.” 

The U.S. “will continue to work with France in implementing climate finance to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement and accelerating the transition to a clean energy economy to achieve net-zero emissions by midcentury,” said the State Department. 

Earlier Thursday while in Berlin, Blinken said the United States and Germany are partnering to counter Holocaust denial and antisemitism, an effort the secretary of state said would “ensure that current and future generations learn about the Holocaust and also learn from it.” 

Media cover US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas as they talk together inside the…
Media cover U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas as they talk inside the Holocaust Memorial, in Berlin, Germany, June 24, 2021.

Speaking at the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin, Blinken said Holocaust denial and antisemitism go hand in hand with homophobia, xenophobia, racism and other forms of discrimination, and have become “a rallying cry for those who seek to tear down our democracies.” 

“That’s why we have to find innovative ways to bring the history of the Holocaust to life, not only to understand the past, but also to guide our present and to shape our future,” the top U.S. diplomat said. 

Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, and German Minister of Foreign Affairs Heiko Maas, right, are served beers as they…
Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, and German Minister of Foreign Affairs Heiko Maas are served beers as they arrive to speak at a youth outreach event at the Clarchens Ballhaus in Berlin, June 24, 2021.

He and German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas signed a document on the partnership. Blinken said the two governments would work to strengthen education and counter denial and distortion, helping public servants and young people understand the Holocaust and antisemitism in depth and to feel a responsibility to stop atrocities. 

“This dialogue will help us remember all that can be lost, but also help us to see all that we can save if we choose — if we choose — to stand up rather than stand by,” said Blinken. 

Libya talks 

Earlier on Thursday, Blinken and Libyan interim Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dabaiba held talks in Berlin following an international conference focused on supporting Libya’s transition to a permanent, stable government.  

Wednesday’s conference, hosted by Germany and the United Nations, included officials from 17 countries and reinforced support for national elections in Libya scheduled for late December.  

A senior U.S. State Department official told reporters Wednesday that the elections are important “not just to legitimize a long-term, credible Libyan government,” but also to help achieve the goal of carrying out an existing call for all foreign fighters to leave the country.  

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, speaks as he meets with Libyan Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dbeibeh, right
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, left, speaks as he meets with Libyan Prime Minister Abdulhamid Dabaiba, right, at the Berlin Marriott Hotel in Berlin, Germany, June 24, 2021.

An official statement from conference attendees said that “all foreign forces and mercenaries need to be withdrawn from Libya without delay,” but on that point Turkey noted its reservations.  

The senior State Department official said Turkey sees its personnel in Libya acting as trainers based on an agreement it had with a previous interim government, the U.N.-recognized Government of National Accord.  

Libya has experienced political instability since the 2011 NATO-backed uprising that ousted longtime leader Moammar Gadhafi from power. Rival governments operated in separate parts of the country for years before a cease-fire deal in October that included a demand for all foreign fighters and mercenaries to leave Libya within 90 days.     

At a news conference following Wednesday’s conference, Libyan Foreign Minister Najla Mangoush said there was progress toward the exit of the foreign fighters and that “hopefully within the coming days mercenaries from both sides are going to be withdrawn.”  

Defeating Islamic State will be the focus of an upcoming conference co-hosted by Blinken and Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio in Rome. The top U.S. diplomat will also participate in a ministerial meeting in Italy to discuss Syria and the humanitarian needs in that country.     

Blinken is also scheduled to visit the Vatican, where Philip Reeker, acting assistant secretary for European and Eurasian affairs, said the agenda includes combating climate change and human trafficking. 

in U.S.
Related Posts

Congress Member Describes Continuing Mental Trauma From January 6 Riots | Voice of America

June 24, 2021

June 24, 2021

Images of the January 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol are seared into many Americans’ minds and remain especially vivid...

Latinas Left Workforce at Highest Rate, See Slow Recovery | Voice of America

June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

PHOENIX – Teresa Marez spent 14 years building a strong clientele base as a hair stylist in San Antonio. When...

US Catholic Bishops OK Steps Toward Possible Rebuke of Biden  | Voice of America

June 19, 2021

June 19, 2021

U.S. Catholic bishops overwhelmingly approved the drafting of a “teaching document” that many of them hope will rebuke Catholic politicians,...

Biden, Putin Brace for Possible Fight Over Ransomware | Voice of America

June 16, 2021

June 16, 2021

WASHINGTON – As President Joe Biden prepares for his first meeting with Russia’s Vladimir Putin on Wednesday in Geneva, the...

US Seizes $90,000 From Man Who Sold Footage of US Capitol Riot | Voice of America

May 22, 2021

May 22, 2021

WASHINGTON – U.S. authorities have confiscated roughly $90,000 from a Utah man who sold footage of a woman being fatally...

US Investigates Instances of Havana Syndrome. But What Exactly Is It?

May 28, 2021

May 28, 2021

On Wednesday, a group of US senators introduced legislation that would provide financial help to US government workers suffering from...

Biden Says US Will Donate 500 Million COVID Vaccines to World | Voice of America

June 11, 2021

June 11, 2021

On Thursday, the eve of the G-7 summit in Cornwall, England, U.S. President Joe Biden formally announced what had been...

Iran’s Absentee Voting Events at US Hotels Raise Sanctions, Ethics Questions  | Voice of America

June 25, 2021

June 25, 2021

Iran’s apparent use of 20 U.S.-based hotel properties as polling sites for its recent presidential election has raised questions about...

Pro-Palestinian Rally in Washington Seeks End to US Aid to Israel | Voice of America

May 30, 2021

May 30, 2021

WASHINGTON – More than 1,000 people rallied Saturday in Washington in support of Palestinians and called for an end to...

Biden to Host Leaders of Mexico and Canada

November 18, 2021

November 18, 2021

President Joe Biden is hosting Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador in person at...

Afghan War Causes Record Bloodshed Amid US Troop Exit  | Voice of America

July 2, 2021

July 2, 2021

ISLAMABAD – The simmering war in Afghanistan, if official accounts are to be accepted, has killed more people last month...

Republicans Block Senate Vote on Panel to Probe Capitol Riot | Voice of America

May 28, 2021

May 28, 2021

Republicans in the U.S. Senate blocked legislation Friday calling for the creation of a panel to investigate the deadly January 6 riot at the U.S....

Rash of Mass Shootings Stirs US Fears Heading into Summer  | Voice of America

June 13, 2021

June 13, 2021

CHICAGO, ILL. – Two people were killed and at least 30 others wounded in mass shootings overnight in three states,...

Biden Heads to the UK and Europe on His First Trip Abroad  | Voice of America

June 9, 2021

June 9, 2021

President Joe Biden is heading to the United Kingdom and Europe on his first trip abroad, sending a signal that...

Biden, Afghan Officials to Meet at White House | Voice of America

June 25, 2021

June 25, 2021

U.S. President Joe Biden will meet with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani and chief peacemaker Abdullah Abdullah at the White House...