Sun. May 26th, 2024
Secretary Antony J. Blinken Before his Conversation with Saudi Women Leaders

ASSISTANT SECRETARY LEAF:  (In progress) Secretary of State Antony Blinken.  I just – we were talking about – so you have a range of figures representing sort of all of the domains, all the sectors in which women are really making their mark, from motocross, from racecar driving to the arts, media, and the nonprofit sector.  So what I thought I would do is sort of pitch it over to you to ask a few questions, but I told the ladies that they should feel free to interrogate you as well.  (Laughter.)

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Absolutely, yes.  I’m in the hot seat.

ASSISTANT SECRETARY LEAF:  And I just – I told them also that you’ve come here regularly, but you don’t – you’ve come here regularly over the course of your career, but you’re usually traveling (inaudible), so this is a chance —

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  That’s exactly right.

ASSISTANT SECRETARY LEAF:  — to get a slice of Saudi Arabia.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you for giving us a nice, brief window.  No, first of all, thank you all for being here.  And one of the reasons I was anxious to get together with this group in particular is because there have been some rather remarkable changes in Saudi Arabia in recent years, in particular with women in the workforce as well as widely defined.  And I was eager to hear about that, hear about that experience, the – both the work that you’re doing, but also how things may be different than they were, and also where you think you’re going and how your experience has been in your very different pursuits.  It’s – as Barbara said, on one level if you’re visiting every few years, it’s one thing, you do see the changes; it’s another thing to be experiencing them day-in, day-out.

So I was very interested to hear from each of you.  And, yes, as Barbara said, happy to take any questions, but mostly I’m here to listen and to (inaudible).  So with that, (inaudible).

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originally published at Politics - JISIP NEWS