US Secretary Of State Blinken Begins Saudi Arabia Visit, Focus On Gaza And Arab Engagement

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United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken has commenced his two-day visit to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This marks the initial leg of a broader journey aimed at engaging with Arab partners on post-war Gaza and urging Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to take specific actions demanded by U.S. President Joe Biden to alleviate the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza. In Riyadh, Secretary Blinken is scheduled to convene with senior Saudi leaders and participate in a broader meeting involving counterparts from five Arab states, including Qatar, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Jordan. The discussions aim to delve into the future governance of the Gaza Strip in the aftermath of the conflict, as outlined by a senior official from the State Department.
Among the key topics on the agenda is the ongoing endeavor to secure a ceasefire in Gaza that ensures the release of hostages. Despite extensive mediation efforts by Qatar and Egypt, Hamas and Israel are yet to reach a consensus on a ceasefire and hostage agreement, primarily due to disparities on critical demands. Secretary Blinken’s visit follows his prior meeting with Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Jeddah last month, where efforts to secure the release of hostages held by Hamas were discussed. The Biden administration continues to pursue a potential agreement that could facilitate normalization between Saudi Arabia and Israel.
During this trip, Secretary Blinken is also set to engage in discussions at the Gulf Cooperation Council Ministerial meeting and the World Economic Forum’s special meeting on Global Collaboration, Growth, and Energy for Development. These engagements aim to advance regional security coordination and reinforce progress on climate change mitigation and the global energy transition.

Disclaimer: This press release is sourced from News On AIR, Prasar Bharti and Press Information Bureau India (PIB).

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