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  • Writer's pictureOlga Nesterova

Blinken's Diplomacy: Messages to China and Iran at the World Economic Forum

Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken engaged in a pivotal dialogue with World Economic Forum President Børge Brende in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, addressing pressing global issues from the conflict in Ukraine to the crisis in the Middle East.

“The designs that Vladimir Putin had on Ukraine to begin with (…) have failed.”

Speaking on Russian aggression in Ukraine, Blinken emphasized the recent $61 billion aid bill passed by the US, highlighting America's steadfast support for Ukraine amidst ongoing hostilities. He underscored Putin's miscalculation of US and NATO support, despite Ukraine enduring nine months of battlefield hardships prior to receiving delayed aid. Blinken also stressed the unity among NATO and G7 allies in assisting Ukraine.

“We have the most consequential and in many ways complicated relationship with China.”

Addressing China's involvement, Blinken revealed a message conveyed to Chinese counterparts regarding their support for Russia's defense industrial base, cautioning against exacerbating the conflict's impact on European stability. He refrained from disclosing China's response, awaiting further developments.

Regarding the Middle East, Blinken characterized the region's current state as the most severe crisis since 1948. He attributed the lack of a ceasefire in Gaza to Hamas and emphasized the potential for normalizing relations between Israel and its neighbors as a pivotal step towards mitigating tensions.

“Where is the demand on Hamas?”

Blinken acknowledged ongoing pro-Palestine protests in US universities, expressing understanding while urging a focus on Hamas.

“In this moment, the only thing standing between the people of Gaza and ceasefire is Hamas.”

In light of Israel's operations in Rafah, Blinken highlighted the US's request for detailed plans to minimize civilian casualties, underscoring the importance of humanitarian considerations in military actions. He commended Saudi Arabia's diplomatic efforts in resolving regional conflicts and stressed the imperative for US engagement and leadership to prevent the emergence of destabilizing power vacuums.

Altogether, in this conversation, we witnessed a shift towards a more direct yet diplomatic discourse with both US partners and adversaries, which is essential in these fragile times where peace hangs in the balance.

Explore my 🧵 thread of posts on X featuring video outtakes that were used for this report.

Source: WEF, Department Of State


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