Under Secretary Fernandez’s Travel to Lithuania and Belgium

28 Jan

Office of the Spokesperson

Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Jose W. Fernandez will travel to Vilnius, Lithuania, January 30 – February 1, and to Brussels, Belgium, February 2-4, 2022.  During his visit to Vilnius, Under Secretary Fernandez will meet with senior government officials to discuss U.S.-Lithuania relations, opportunities for deepening bilateral economic cooperation, and our shared commitment to rules-based policies that encourage responsible, sustainable economic development.  The Under Secretary will also discuss the United States’ continuing strong support for Lithuania in the face of political pressure and economic coercion from the People’s Republic of China.

The U.S. delegation led by Under Secretary Fernandez will include senior leaders from the Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) to discuss the implementation of the recently signed $600 million memorandum of understanding to expand opportunities for U.S. exporters and Lithuanian buyers in areas such as high-tech manufacturing, business services, and renewable energy.

In Brussels, the Under Secretary will meet with EU officials to discuss issues of common concern, including countering economic coercion and deepening and expanding transatlantic trade and investment through the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC).

In both capitals, Under Secretary Fernandez will discuss collaboration to deliver a positive economic agenda that increases prosperity for the people of the United States, Lithuania, and the entire European Union.

DNC Statement on Today’s Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania Ruling

28 Jan
Following today’s Commonwealth Court ruling on vote by mail in Pennsylvania, DNC Chair Jaime Harrison released the following statement: 
“The DNC will not let today’s ruling deter us from our work to ensure that all eligible Pennsylvania voters are given an equal opportunity to participate in our elections. Pennsylvanians can rest assured that today’s decision has already been appealed and stayed. We are confident in our case and we will leave no stone unturned in our ongoing efforts to protect the freedom to vote.”

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U.S. Special Envoy Lenderking Returns from Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Muscat, and London

28 Jan

Office of the Spokesperson

U.S. Special Envoy Tim Lenderking met with partners in coordination with the UN Special Envoy during his trip to Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Muscat, and London.  The Special Envoy focused his engagements on the urgent need for de-escalation and protection of civilians, including detained U.S. and UN Yemeni staff in Sana’a, bringing the parties together to support a UN-led inclusive peace process, intensifying efforts to improve economic stability, and pressing for action to improve humanitarian access and address the fuel crisis.  Special Envoy Lenderking continued to raise the U.S. government’s deepening concern regarding humanitarian funding gaps as aid organizations are forced to cut assistance to millions of Yemenis.  The UN estimates that they will need $3.9 billion in 2022 to meet the needs of Yemenis.

During separate conversations in Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Muscat, Special Envoy Lenderking reiterated the U.S. government’s unwavering commitment to supporting the defense of their territories, their citizens, and the thousands of U.S. citizens residing in the region whose safety is the top U.S. national security priority.  The Special Envoy also emphasized the U.S. government’s condemnation of the recent Houthi attacks against the UAE and Saudi Arabia that killed civilians, and deep concern about recent reports of civilian casualties from Coalition airstrikes in Yemen.  Special Envoy Lenderking stressed the responsibility of all parties to abide by their obligations under international humanitarian law, including those related to protection of all civilians.

While in London, the Special Envoy participated in a Quint meeting with representatives from Oman, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and the UK.  UN Special Envoy Hans Grundberg joined the Quint to discuss ways to advance a durable political resolution to the conflict.  UN Humanitarian Coordinator David Gressly also briefed during the Quint meeting in detail about the impact of the fighting on the Yemeni people.  During these meetings, Special Envoy Lenderking stressed the U.S. government’s concern with the profound impact of the recent military escalation on civilians.  The Special Envoy also reemphasized the urgent need to bring the parties together to engage constructively in UN-led political talks and to alleviate the suffering of the people in Yemen.

Special Envoy Lenderking urges the parties to de-escalate, seize opportunities for peace in 2022, and cooperate with the international community as we try to help create the space for Yemenis to dialogue and determine their own future.

For any questions, please contact Vanessa Vidal at NEA-press@state.gov and follow us on Twitter @StateDept_NEA.

Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative Launches 2022 Fellowship Program

28 Jan

Office of the Spokesperson

Today, 280 business and social entrepreneurs from 37 countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Canada began the 2022 Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) Fellowship Program.  Over the next six months, the YLAI Fellows will collaborate with companies and social enterprises in 20 U.S. cities to deepen relationships and increase business ties between the United States and the Americas.  The YLAI Fellows will conclude the program in July 2022 with a Closing Forum and will join over 1,000 YLAI Fellowship Program alumni.

Launched in 2015, YLAI is the Department of State’s flagship program to empower emerging entrepreneurs from the Western Hemisphere with the training, tools, networks, and resources needed to strengthen economic and social development across the region.  In addition to the yearly fellowship program, YLAI offers an active online network that provides young leaders through the Americas with access to courses, resources, and opportunities to collaborate.

The 2022 YLAI fellows were selected through a competitive application process, with over 2,300 eligible applicants.  They work in diverse industries including clean energy, health care, technology, arts and culture, agriculture, hospitality, and marketing.  We invite you to read their profiles here .

The YLAI Fellowship Program is funded by the U.S. Department of State and implemented in 2022 by IREX.  Follow the 2022 YLAI Fellowship Program on social media at #YLAI2022.  For press inquiries, please contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at ECA-Press@state.gov.  For more information on joining the free YLAI network or how to apply for the upcoming YLAI fellowship program, please visit https://ylai.state.gov/.

While President Biden Stands Strong Against Russian Aggression, Republicans Side with Putin and Trump

28 Jan

Over the past several weeks, President Biden and his administration have stepped up and rallied our allies to lead a strong, united front in the face of Russian aggression. Instead of coming together and joining President Biden and our democratic allies in the name of national security, many Republican leaders have chosen to defer toh Vladimir Putin.

But why would anyone be surprised? These same Republicans stood silently by for four years while Donald Trump sold out our allies and national reputation to Russia. It’s the same old story, just a different day. 

A number of leading Republicans are refusing to confront Russian aggression, and trying to shift blame from Putin to President Biden. 

New York Times: “Republican Rift on Ukraine Could Undercut U.S. Appeals to Allies”

Axios: “Republicans running in high-profile primary races aren’t racing to defend Ukraine against a possible Russian invasion. They’re settling on a different line of attack: Blame Biden, not Putin.”

HuffPost: “With the Ukraine crisis dominating headlines and sparking fears of a global conflict, Republicans are scrambling to convince voters that the tense geopolitical situation is President Joe Biden’s fault. But conservatives just can’t agree on what Biden is doing wrong.”

But who’s surprised? Republicans spent four years enabling Donald Trump while he coddled Russia and destroyed the United States’ global reputation.

CNN: “After four years of silently watching — or supporting — Trump complimenting the Russian President (tweeting, ‘I always knew he was very smart!’), and dissing US intelligence agencies on issues like Russian election interference (‘President Putin says it’s not Russia. I don’t see any reason why it would be.’), what are [Republicans] to do now that Russia has 100,000 troops at the Ukrainian border?”

Washington Post: “GOP senators protect Trump administration’s plan to lift Russian sanctions”

Washington Post: “Republicans defend Trump as concerned with Ukrainian corruption but aides tell a different story”

New York Times: “The president’s extraordinary news conference with Mr. Putin in Helsinki, Finland, stunned Republicans across the ideological spectrum … Yet no Republican in Congress pledged any particular action to punish Mr. Trump, such as holding up his nominees or delaying legislation, nor did any Republican promise hearings or increased oversight.”

NBC News: “Other GOP members defended the president’s performance. Members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, during their weekly press conference, stood by Trump Tuesday.”

Meanwhile, President Biden is demonstrating leadership, presenting a clear and forceful message to Russia, and standing strong with our allies in the face of Russian aggression. 

Wall Street Journal: “Biden Seeks to Reassure Ukraine, Vowing a Strong Response to Russia and Transferring Weapons”

New York Times: “In Standoff With Putin, Biden Makes Sure European Allies Are With Him”

New York Times: “The United States, European officials say, has acted with energy and some dexterity in orchestrating the response to Russia’s threatening moves. Since mid-November, it has conducted at least 180 senior-level meetings or other contacts with European officials. Some marvel at having their American counterparts on speed dial.”


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Medios Nacionales en español destacan la noticia sobre el mayor crecimiento económico desde 1984

28 Jan

El plan económico del presidente Biden está funcionando. La economía de nuestro país creció un 5,7% en 2021, lo que representa la mayor expansión en un año desde 1984. Este se suma al mayor año de crecimiento laboral en la historia de Estados Unidos. Gracias al presidente Biden y los demócratas nos estamos recuperando mucho más rápido de lo que los expertos pronosticaron. Estamos construyendo una economía para competir y tener éxito en el siglo XXI, creando empleos mejor pagados, reconstruyendo nuestro sistema de fabricación nacional y estamos viendo los resultados. 

Echa un vistazo a la cobertura nacional aquí:

  • EFE: La economía de EE.UU. se recuperó en 2021 con su mayor crecimiento en 37 años
  • Univision: La economía de EEUU creció un 5.7% en 2021, su mayor expansión anual desde el año 1984
  • Telemundo: Reporte: la economía de EEUU creció en 2021 al mayor ritmo en 37 años
  • Voz de América: Economía de EE. UU. creció en 2021 a su mayor nivel en 37 años
  • AP News en español: Repunta la economía de EEUU en 2021; creció en 5,7%
  • Reuters en español: Economía EEUU recupera ritmo en cuarto trimestre y crecimiento de 2021 es el mayor desde 1984
  • Infobae: La economía de Estados Unidos creció 5,7% anual en 2021, el máximo salto desde 1984


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IN THE STATES: Local News Highlights President Biden’s Leadership on the Economy, COVID-19, Infrastructure

28 Jan

This week, local news was once again full of headlines about President Biden’s strong leadership – from sending free N95 masks and COVID-19 tests to Americans who need them, to shepherding the strongest year of economic growth in nearly four decades, to investing in our nation’s infrastructure. Meanwhile, Democrats (and local editorial boards) across the country continued to call out Republicans for trying to take credit for the very infrastructure investments that they voted against.

Here’s what voters across the country are reading this week about President Biden’s work to tackle the pandemic: 

About how his leadership continues to rebuild our economy:

About Republicans trying to take credit for the infrastructure legislation they voted against: 

And finally, all of the ways President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is set to make a real difference in communities across the country:


The post IN THE STATES: Local News Highlights President Biden’s Leadership on the Economy, COVID-19, Infrastructure appeared first on Democrats.

Nauru National Day

28 Jan

Antony J. Blinken, Secretary of State

On behalf of the United States of America, I send my best wishes to the people of the Republic of Nauru as you celebrate the 54th anniversary of your independence.

The United States and Nauru have an enduring partnership marked by our shared commitment to democratic values and close collaboration on regional issues.  Together we can work to promote sustainable economic development and educational opportunities, protect fisheries, tackle the climate crisis, and strengthen regional security.