Blinken Embarks on Trip to Israel, Morocco, Algeria for High-Level Talks on Iran, Ukraine

© REUTERS / EVELYN HOCKSTEINU.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken attends a European Union leaders summit amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Brussels, Belgium March 24, 2022.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken attends a European Union leaders summit amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Brussels, Belgium March 24, 2022.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.03.2022
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US Secretary of State Antony Blinken kicks off a five-day tour of the Middle East and North Africa on Saturday - with stops in Israel, the West Bank, Morocco, and Algeria - to discuss a host of issues, including the situation in Ukraine and negotiations over the Iran nuclear deal.
The State Department said the aim of Blinken's trip from 26-30 March is to consult with partners on a range of regional and global priorities, including Russia's special operation in Ukraine, as well as Iran and Israeli-Palestinian relations.
The secretary's trip will begin in Israel on Saturday for meetings with top officials, including Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Foreign Minister and alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid, Defence Minister Benny Gantz, and Israeli President Isaac Herzog.
Blinken is expected to discuss the Israeli government's role as a mediator between Russia and Ukraine, a State Department official said earlier this week.
Blinken will also meet with the President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas as well as representatives of Palestinian civil society and will raise Washington's commitment to a two-state solution, US officials have said.
Relations between Israel and Palestinians have been sour for decades. Palestinians seek diplomatic recognition of an independent state on the territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, which is partially occupied by Israel, and the Gaza Strip.
Israel will host a "historic" summit with the participation of Blinken and the foreign ministers of the UAE, Morocco, and Bahrain. According to the Israeli Foreign Ministry, the event will take place on Sunday and Monday. In addition, Blinken and the three foreign ministers are expected to hold a series of diplomatic meetings, according to officials.
Morocco will be the next stop on Blinken's tour where he will meet Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita and other senior government officials
He will also meet with Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Rabat to discuss regional security and international matters, the State Department said.
Earlier this month, US media outlets reported that Saudi and UAE leaders ignored calls from the White House to discuss efforts to increase oil production amid the West's efforts to isolate Russia over its special military operation in Ukraine.
Blinken will lastly travel to Algeria to meet with President Abdelmadjid Tebboune and Foreign Minister Ramtane Lamamra to discuss regional security and stability.
Let's stay in touch no matter what! Follow our Telegram channel to get all the latest news:
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала