April 24, 2024

Secretary Antony J. Blinken and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres Before Their Meeting

Secretary Antony J. Blinken and United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres Before Their Meeting

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Well, let me just say briefly what a pleasure it is to be with the secretary-general, as always, but especially in this time where the United Nations is playing such a critical, vital role.  We have a lot of important things to go over, starting, of course, with Gaza and the conflict between Israel and Hamas.  I’ve seen every day what the United Nations is doing with the extraordinary courage and bravery of its people to try to make sure that people who desperately need it get the help, the assistance, the support they need – Palestinians in Gaza – and I’m incredibly admiring of the efforts that the UN is undertaking, and also very grateful for the secretary-general’s leadership in this area, and now with the recent naming coming from a Security Council resolution of a coordinator, Sigrid Kaag, who’s exceptional and I’ve had the opportunity to work with.

So I know we’ll talk about that, talk about both the challenges and opportunities in Haiti, where the UN is also doing vital work, and of course many other challenges, including the ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine.  But most important is I’m just very grateful on behalf of the United States for the secretary-general’s leadership and for the United Nations, because if we didn’t have it, we – as we would say, we would have to invent it because of the extraordinary work that members of the UN team are doing around the world every day, and no more so than in Gaza.

SECRETARY-GENERAL GUTERRES:  The partnership between the United States and the United Nations is an absolutely fundamental part of our multilateral program, and I am particularly grateful for the personal efforts that Secretary Blinken has been developing in order to address some of the most challenging problems of our time.  I think we all want the war in Ukraine to end, but to end in line with the UN Charter, in line with international law.  I think we all want this crisis in Gaza to end with a resolution of peace, a two-state solution implemented, and Palestinians and Israelis being able to transform this horrible crisis into an opportunity to deal with a common future.  And we are extremely interested in cooperating in many other situations around the world where the U.S. and the UN are joining efforts to bring peace, to bring stability, and to bring development.  That is also essential to stabilize these achievements that we hope we’ll be able to get to.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you.  Thanks, everyone.

Official news published at https://www.state.gov/secretary-antony-j-blinken-and-united-nations-secretary-general-antonio-guterres-before-their-meeting/