Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024
Secretary Antony J. Blinken And New Zealand Foreign Minister Winston Peters Before Their Meeting

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Good morning, everyone.  It’s a great pleasure to welcome Deputy Prime Minister Peters here to the State Department, to Washington, to the United States.  New Zealand and the United States are the closest of partners, and we’re working together to support and advance a free and open, resilient Indo-Pacific region.  And I also very much appreciate the focus that we both bring to working with our friends in the Pacific Islands.

But the work that we’re doing together with New Zealand is not simply bilateral, not simply regional; it’s increasingly global.  And New Zealand’s leadership on everything from supporting Ukraine against the aggression from Russia, the work there, its humanitarian support for people who so desperately need it in Gaza.  Just last week, we were together at the meeting of the NATO foreign ministers.

In these and so many other endeavors, our countries are closely joined, because fundamentally we reflect and we seek to advance the same basic values and the same basic interests.  And in a challenging time and a challenging world, for the United States, there’s nothing better than having strong partners like New Zealand.  I couldn’t be more grateful for that, and Winston, to have you here today.

FOREIGN MINISTER PETERS:  Well, thank you, Secretary General.  In a very extensive international series of meetings over a number of continents, we’re here now in Washington, and we’re pleased to be here, Secretary General.

Amongst other things, so we are one of the few enduring democracies all these centuries, and we’ve got a lot to talk about that’s of mutual interest to not just ourselves but in the areas in which we live – for us, it’s the Indo‑Pacific in particular; the region that’s called the Blue Continent more closely associated with us as well.  But where we can possibly make progress together, making our efforts more influential and more meaningful, and that’s our purpose.  So I’m delighted to be here with my team.  Thank you very much.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you.  Good to have you.  Thanks, everyone.

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originally published at Politics - JISIP NEWS