U.S. – Taiwan Working Group Meeting on International Organizations (IO Talks)

24 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

On October 22, 2021, the American Institute in Taiwan and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) convened high-level representatives of the U.S. Department of State and the Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs for a virtual forum on expanding Taiwan’s participation at the United Nations and in other international fora. The discussion focused on supporting Taiwan’s ability to participate meaningfully at the UN and contribute its valuable expertise to address global challenges, including global public health, the environment and climate change, development assistance, technical standards, and economic cooperation. U.S. participants reiterated the U.S. commitment to Taiwan’s meaningful participation at the World Health Organization and UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and discussed ways to highlight Taiwan’s ability to contribute to efforts on a wide range of issues.  Participants lauded the significant expansion this year of the Global Cooperation and Training Framework, demonstrating Taiwan’s willingness and capacity to address global challenges through multilateral collaboration.

Participants in the discussion included: AIT Deputy Director Jeremy Cornforth, State Department Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Organizations Hugo Yon, Deputy Assistant Secretary for China, Taiwan, and Mongolia Rick Waters, Deputy Assistant Secretaries for International Organizations Nerissa Cook and Jane Rhee, Secretary General of Ministry of Foreign Affairs Lily Hsu, and TECRO Deputy Representative Liang-yu Wang.

Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs Bitter Travels to Guadalajara, Mexico City, and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

23 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs Rena Bitter will travel October 25-31 to Guadalajara, Mexico City, and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.  In Guadalajara and San Miguel de Allende, she will observe consular operations and meet with staff.  In Mexico City, in addition to meeting with embassy staff, she will meet with host government officials in an annual bilateral consular dialogue to discuss topics of mutual interest and underscore our deep and sustained cooperation on a broad range of consular issues.  The U.S. Mission in Mexico is one of the largest consular operations in the world, supporting deep people-to-people and economic ties between the United States and Mexico

For press inquiries please contact CAPRESSREQUESTS@state.gov.

Secretary Blinken’s Call with Cabo Verdean Prime Minister Correia e Silva

23 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

The below is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:

Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke with Cabo Verdean Prime Minister José Ulisses Correia e Silva yesterday.  Secretary Blinken congratulated Cabo Verde on its strong and independent democratic institutions and Cabo Verde’s free and fair presidential election on October 17.  The Secretary recognized Cabo Verde’s robust response to COVID-19 and reiterated the United States’ commitment to continuing to share COVID-19 vaccines with our global partners.

Secretary Blinken’s Call with UN Secretary-General Guterres

23 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

The below is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:

Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres today to discuss topics of global importance, including Afghanistan.  They also discussed their shared concern over the worsening conflict in northern Ethiopia, including the escalating violence and its impact on humanitarian operations.  Secretary Blinken expressed U.S. appreciation for the Secretary-General’s efforts to address the humanitarian crisis and commended the efforts of the UN Country Team in Ethiopia, which continues to work under challenging conditions.  The Secretary and Secretary-General Guterres discussed opportunities to strengthen international collaboration to stop the current hostilities, promote negotiations toward a sustainable ceasefire, and deliver life-saving assistance.

Deputy Secretary Sherman’s meeting with Argentine Secretary for Strategic Affairs Béliz 

22 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

The below is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:

Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman met with Argentina’s Secretary for Strategic Affairs Gustavo Béliz today in Washington, D.C. to advance important aspects of our bilateral relationship.  They discussed shared goals for democracy in the hemisphere, addressing the climate crisis, strengthening collaboration on regional security, and civil nuclear cooperation.

Assistant Secretary Donfried’s Trip to Sweden, Estonia, Norway, and Rome 

22 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, Dr. Karen Donfried, will travel to Stockholm, Sweden October 25-26 to meet with senior government officials to discuss the bilateral relationship and cooperation in regional and global issues.

Assistant Secretary Donfried will then travel to Tallinn, Estonia October 26-27 to participate in the Bucharest 9 Foreign Ministerial meeting, and to meet with senior Estonian officials to discuss bilateral relations, regional security, and strengthening democratic values and institutions.

She will then travel to Oslo, Norway, October 27-28 to meet senior leaders in the new Norwegian government and discuss the strong, positive U.S.-Norwegian relationship as well as a range of bilateral and global issues, including the climate crisis, security, and non-proliferation.

Assistant Secretary Donfried will then travel to Rome, Italy, October 28 to November 1, where she will support the U.S. delegation that will be participating in the G20 Leaders’ Summit.

Acting Assistant Secretary Lempert’s Trip to Tunisia and Libya

22 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Yael Lempert visited Tunisia and Libya October 19-21.  During her trip to Tunisia, Acting Assistant Secretary Lempert met with Tunisian government officials, including Foreign Minister Othman Jerandi, welcoming Tunisia’s newly formed government and reiterated that the U.S. looks forward to the establishment of a broadly inclusive process for a rapid return to constitutional order. She also discussed Libya and other regional issues. Acting Assistant Secretary Lempert also met with young Tunisian civil society representatives and women entrepreneurs who are playing a key role in Tunisia’s economic future.  

In Libya, accompanied by U.S. Special Envoy and Ambassador to Libya Richard Norland, Acting Assistant Secretary Lempert represented the United States at the Libya Stabilization Conference in Tripoli. She also participated in bilateral meetings with senior Libyan officials, including Prime Minister Dabaiba and Foreign Minister Mangoush, and a range of other foreign delegations to the conference, emphasizing the importance of Libya’s efforts to prepare for free and fair national elections in December, and U.S. support for the withdrawal of all foreign forces, fighters, and mercenaries from Libya.

The United States Certifies Mexico’s Shrimp Imports

22 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

The Department of State notified Congress on October 21, 2021 of the certification of Mexico under Section 609 of United States Public Law 101-162 (“Section 609”).  Section 609 prohibits the import of shrimp and shrimp products harvested in ways that may adversely affect sea turtle species.  This certification, allowing again for importation of wild-caught shrimp into the United States from Mexico pursuant to Section 609, is based on a determination that Mexico’s turtle excluder devices (TEDs) program is again comparable in effectiveness to the U.S. program.

The United States and Mexico have been working in close cooperation on sea turtle conservation as well as a range of bilateral fisheries and marine conservation issues.  The Government of Mexico implemented a plan of action in the past several months to strengthen sea turtle conservation in its shrimp trawl fisheries, resulting in significantly improved use of TEDs by its fishing industry, as verified by a team of representatives from the State Department and National Marine Fisheries Service.

The U.S. government is currently providing technology and capacity-building assistance to other nations to contribute to the recovery of sea turtle species and help them receive certification under Section 609.  When properly designed, built, installed, used, and maintained, TEDs allow 97 percent of sea turtles to escape the shrimp net without appreciable loss of shrimp.  The U.S. government also encourages legislation in other countries to prevent the importation of shrimp harvested in a manner harmful to protected sea turtles.

For press inquiries, contact OES-PA-DG@state.gov. 

Secretary Blinken’s Participation in the Ninth U.S.-Colombia High-Level Dialogue

22 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

The following is attributable to Spokesperson Ned Price:

Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken led the U.S. delegation to the ninth round of the U.S.-Colombia High-Level Dialogue (HLD) in Bogotá, Colombia October 21. First conducted in 2010, the dialogue serves as the flagship opportunity for the United States and Colombia to deepen our cooperation across a broad range of bilateral issues. All discussions focused on recognizing progress on our shared goals, highlighting the spirit of partnership, and designating future areas for inclusive engagement under this framework. Colombian Vice President and Foreign Minister Marta Lucía Ramírez led the Colombian delegation.

At the HLD, delegations from the two countries held discussions on expanding cooperation in the areas of Economic and Social Opportunities; Education, Culture, and Sports; Environment, Climate Change, and Health; Energy and Infrastructure; Democracy, Good Governance, and Human Rights; and Security, Counternarcotics, and Rural Development. Secretary Blinken and Vice President Ramírez committed to work with civil society and other relevant stakeholders to advance racial and ethnic equity and equality in both countries, and to deepen cooperation on combatting environmental crimes, rural and digital development, and strengthening climate change action. 

With the conclusion of the ninth HLD, the United States looks forward to celebrating 200 years of bilateral relations with Colombia next year and reaffirms our commitment to partner with the people and government toward our shared goals and a more inclusive, democratic, secure, and prosperous future for our region.

Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry Travel to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

21 Oct

Office of the Spokesperson

Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry will travel to Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on October 24-25, 2021 to engage with government counterparts and private sector leaders on efforts to address the climate crisis.  Secretary Kerry will participate in the Middle East Green Initiative Summit while in Riyadh.

Secretary Kerry’s engagements will bolster the United States’ bilateral and multilateral climate diplomacy efforts ahead of the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which will be held October 31 to November 12 in Glasgow, United Kingdom.

For media inquiries, please contact ClimateComms@state.gov.