This Week at State: May 17, 2019

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This Week at State: May 17, 2019

Did you miss key foreign policy developments this week? Each week, DipNote recaps the latest U.S. Department of State highlights spanning a wide range of global issues, events, and initiatives in one blog post.

Here are the key moments from This Week at State:

Secretary Pompeo Delivers Keynote Remarks at Claremont Institute

On May 11, Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo delivered keynote remarks at the Claremont Institute’s 40th Anniversary Gala in Beverly Hills, California.

On May 11, Secretary Pompeo also participated in an interview on Iran and other global issues with Hadley Gamble of CNBC.

Secretary Pompeo’s Travel to Brussels, Belgium, and Sochi, Russia

On May 12, Secretary Pompeo traveled to Brussels, Belgium, to meet with European allies to discuss recent threatening actions and statements by Iran. Senior Policy Advisor and Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook spoke with the traveling press prior to the Secretary’s meetings.

On May 14 in Sochi, Russia, Secretary Pompeo met with President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Following these meetings, Secretary Pompeo participated in a press availability with Foreign Minister Lavrov, and briefed the traveling press on his meetings.

Meetings with Global Leaders

On May 11, Secretary Pompeo called Panamanian President-Elect Laurentino Cortizo to congratulate him on his recent electoral victory and express his appreciation for the U.S.-Panama relationship.

On May 15, the Secretary spoke by phone with Omani Sultan Qaboos bin Sa’id Al Sa’id and thanked him for Oman’s enduring partnership with the United States.

On May 16, Secretary Pompeo met with Sri Lanka Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana and reiterated the United States’ condemnation of the attacks that Sri Lanka suffered last month and affirmed U.S. support for Sri Lanka in its fight against terrorism. Secretary Pompeo met with  Singapore Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan to strengthen cooperation under the comprehensive U.S.-Singapore Strategic Partnership and to advance peace and security in the Indo-Pacific region.

The Secretary also met with met with Hong Kong pro-democracy leader Martin Lee and his delegation on May 16 to discuss the status of Hong Kong’s autonomy under the “One Country, Two Systems” framework.

On May 16, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David M. Hale called newly elected Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare to congratulate him and the people of the Solomon Islands on their national elections.

State Department Breaks Ground on New U.S. Consulate Generals in Hermosillo, Guadalajara, and Nogales; Dedicates New U.S. Consulate General in Matamoros

In a display of enduring friendship and the important bilateral partnership, U.S. and Mexican officials broke ground on the new U.S. Consulate General in Hermosillo on May 13 in Guadalajara on May 14 and in Nogales on May 16. In addition, on May 15, officials dedicated the new U.S. Consulate General in Matamoros, Mexico.

U.S. and Korea Discuss Environmental Protection in Third Environmental Affairs Council

On May 13-14, the United States and the Republic of Korea held the third meeting of the Environmental Affairs Council and the Environmental Cooperation Commission. Both nations outlined actions they have taken to increase levels of environmental protection, ensure effective enforcement of environmental laws, and provide greater opportunities for public participation in environmental governance.

Speakers and Panelists Announced for Global Entrepreneurship Summit

On May 15, the United States and Kingdom of the Netherlands announced entrepreneurs, business leaders, investors, supporters, and policymakers who will attend the 2019 Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) from June 3-5, 2019, in The Hague. Speakers will address ways to support the next wave of entrepreneurship and innovation and the future of agriculture, connectivity, energy, health, and water.

In a press statement on May 15, Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus welcomed the United Nations Security Council’s 1267 ISIL and al-Qa’ida Sanctions Committee decision to designate ISIS-Khorasan (ISIS-K), an ISIS affiliate that has carried out terrorist attacks primarily in Afghanistan.

U.S. Expresses Condolences on the Passing of His Beatitude Cardinal Patriarch Emeritus Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir

In a May 15 press statement, Spokesperson Ortagus offered condolences on the passing of His Beatitude Cardinal Patriarch Emeritus Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir.

U.S. Congratulates South Africa on its Successful National Elections

In a press statement on May 15, Spokesperson Ortagus said, “The United States congratulates the people of South Africa on successful national elections.  We commend all South Africans who participated peacefully in the elections, which reflects South Africa’s commitment to democracy.” 

U.S. Congratulates the New President of the Federated States of Micronesia

In a press statement on May 15, Spokesperson Ortagus said, “The United States congratulates President David Panuelo on his election as the ninth President of the Federated States of Micronesia. We congratulate the people of the Federated States of Micronesia on the democratic process and peaceful transition.”

U.S. Welcomes Eighth Caribbean-United States Security Cooperation Dialogue

On May 16, the Eighth Caribbean-United States Security Cooperation Dialogue brought together delegations from the United States and the nations of the Caribbean. As part of the U.S.-Caribbean 2020 strategy, this year’s Dialogue focused on threats to regional stability, integrated responses to common security challenges, and strategies for reducing crime. Following the dialogue, participants released a joint statement.

Deputy Secretary John Sullivan wrote an opinion piece that appeared in the Miami Herald on May 15 and underscored the importance of the United States’ cooperation with its Caribbean neighbors.

State Department Comments on Implementation of the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act

On May 16, the State Department submitted to Congress the sixth annual report on the U.S. government’s actions to implement the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act (“Russia Magnitsky Act”). In a press statement, Spokesperson Ortagus said, “As part of this report, the State Department, in consultation with the Treasury Department, submitted to Congress a list of five individuals and one entity who have been determined, based on credible information, to meet the criteria described in the Russia Magnitsky Act.”

State Department Hosts 2019 Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month event

On May 16, Deputy Secretary Sullivan delivered remarks at the State Department’s annual Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month event.

Secretary Pompeo Swears-In 152nd Foreign Service Specialist Class

On May 16, Secretary Pompeo officiated the swearing-in ceremony of the 152nd Foreign Service Specialist Class at the State Department.

Secretary Pompeo Swears-in New Under Secretary for Management

On May 16, Secretary Pompeo officiated the swearing-in of the new Under Secretary for Management, Brian Bulatao.

Follow the State Department on Twitter and Facebook for additional information and updates.

Editor’s Note: This entry is also published in the U.S. Department of State’s publication on Medium.