This Week at State: August 23, 2019

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U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo participates in a UN Security Council Session on Middle East Peace and Security.
U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo participates in a UN Security Council Session on Middle East Peace and Security, in New York City

This Week at State: August 23, 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:

U.S. Expresses Support for the People of Sudan

In a statement on August 17, Spokesperson Ortagus congratulated the people of Sudan on the signing of the Constitutional Declaration and political agreement between the Forces for Freedom and Change and the Transitional Military Council.

Statement in Commemoration of World Humanitarian Day

In a statement on August 19, Secretary Pompeo recognized the tireless efforts of humanitarian workers, who every day risk their personal safety on behalf of people whose lives are disrupted when crises hit. The United States recognizes the tremendous service of all humanitarian heroes who have devoted themselves to serving others through their unbounded generosity and unflagging resolve.

Secretary Pompeo Travels to New York 

On August 20, Secretary Pompeo traveled to New York to participate in a UN Security Council debate hosted by the Polish Mission to the United Nations on challenges to peace and security in the Middle East and the Administration’s support for multilateral solutions. The Secretary also met with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic on the margins of the event, and participated in a joint press availability with Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz. 

In New York, Secretary Pompeo addressed the UN Security Council session on Middle East Peace and Security. 

Secretary Pompeo Condemns the Injustices Committed Against Cuban Journalist 

In a press statement on August 21, Secretary Pompeo strongly condemned the prosecution of Roberto Quinones. The United States calls upon the Cuban regime to immediately release Mr. Quinones and to cease their abuse and mistreatment. 

U.S. Condemns the Use of Chemical Weapons

In a press statement on August 21, Spokesperson Ortagus commemorated the somber anniversary of the Assad regime's chemical weapons attack in the Ghouta district in Damascus -- killing more than 1,400 Syrians, many of them children. 

U.S. Marks International Day of Remembrance of and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism

In a press statement on August 21, Secretary Pompeo expressed the United States' solidarity with the victims of terrorism and their families and condemned the suffering caused by terrorism around the world. We honor the strength and resilience of these victims and their families and the important role their engagement and voices contribute to preventing the recruitment and radicalization of potential terrorists.

U.S. Offers Reward for Information Leading to Identification or Location of ISIS Deputies

On August 22, Spokesperson Ortagus announced new Rewards for Justice offers for information leading to the identification or location of ISIS Deputies: Amir Muhammad Sa’id Abdal-Rahman al-Mawla, Sami Jasim Muhammad al-Jaburi, and Mu‘taz Numan ‘Abd Nayif Najm al-Jaburi.

Secretary Pompeo Travels to Canada

Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo traveled to Ottawa, Canada on August 22 for meetings with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland. Secretary Pompeo also held a joint press availability with Foreign Minister Freeland. Read more on "Canada and the United States: Strengthening Our Alliance."

International Commitment to Protect Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief

In a press statement on August 22, the Secretary marked the first International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief. The day serves as a reminder of the need to promote and protect the unalienable right of religious freedom, and the consequences when countries fail to do so.

Troika Countries Welcome New Prime Minister of Sudan

In a joint statement on August 22, the United States, United Kingdom, and Norway congratulated Dr. Abdalla Hamdok on his appointment as Prime Minister of Sudan. The troika welcomes this step in creating a civilian-led government. The appointment of a civilian-led government presents an opportunity to rebuild a stable economy and create a government that respects human rights and personal freedoms. 

U.S. Concerned About Chinese Escalation Against Vietnam in South China Sea

In a press statement on August 22, Spokesperson Ortagus declared that the United States is deeply concerned that China is continuing its interference with Vietnam’s longstanding oil and gas activities in Vietnam’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) claim. 

Meetings with Global Leaders

On August 19, Secretary Pompeo met with Angolan Foreign Minister Manuel Augusto and spoke by phone with Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry. 

On August 21, Secretary Pompeo spoke by phone with Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod

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.