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:
25th Anniversary of Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty
On an October 26 press statement Secretary Pompeo noted the twenty-fifth anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Peace between the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the State of Israel, an agreement that began a tradition of peaceful and respectful cooperation that continues today.
Secretary Pompeo Celebrates International Religious Freedom Day
On October 27, Secretary Pompeo commemorated the 21st anniversary of the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act (IRF Act), landmark legislation that - for the first time - made promoting and defending international religious freedom a specific focus of U.S. foreign policy.
The continuing attacks on #religiousfreedom around the world are appalling & unacceptable. We will unapologetically stand for survivors of persecution & confront countries who don't protect the most fundamental of unalienable rights. We will not sit back. We will not be silent. pic.twitter.com/1pXiGZC2hx— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) October 27, 2019
Secretary Pompeo Comments on Death of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi
On October 27, Secretary Pompeo commented on the death of ISIS’s leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, who was taken down during a raid on his hideout by U.S. Special Forces in northwest Syria. While there is still work to do to ensure ISIS’s enduring defeat, Baghdadi’s death follows the path of scores of other ISIS leaders that have been removed from the battlefield and can no longer commit heinous atrocities or spread their vile ideology of hatred to poison and recruit vulnerable minds.
President @realDonaldTrump and the United States will not stop in the pursuit of bringing evil to justice and delivering on our promise to do everything in our power to keep America safe. https://t.co/3gcOykMNgQ— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) October 27, 2019
U.S. Responds to Irregularities in Bolivia’s Presidential Election
In an October 27 press statement, Secretary Pompeo stated that the United States believes that the Bolivian people have the right to choose their leaders in free and fair elections. The Secretary reaffirmed, the United States stands with our partners in the region and the OAS observers in calling for an accurate accounting of the votes cast, or if that is not feasible, a second round that is credible and transparent.
The United States and democratic partners are watching #Bolivia’s institutions and leaders to ensure the voice and will of its people are honored. We will work with the international community towards that end. pic.twitter.com/8ATxkVJGow— Morgan Ortagus (@statedeptspox) October 28, 2019
State Department Comments on Protests in Iraq
In a press statement on October 27, Spokesperson Ortagus noted that the United States is closely monitoring the situation in Iraq and calls on all sides to reject the cycle of violence. We extend our condolences to the families of those killed during the demonstrations this weekend. We mourn the loss of life and wish those injured a swift and full recovery.
U.S., Russia, China, and Pakistan Joint Statement on Peace in Afghanistan
On October 28, the United States, Russia, China, and Pakistan released a joint statement from their meetings on Afghanistan, held in Moscow on October 24-25, 2019. Respectful of the sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of Afghanistan, participants discussed ways to support the Afghan people’s desire for a lasting peace.
Secretary Pompeo Congratulates Argentina on Presidential Elections
On October 28, Secretary Pompeo congratulated the people of Argentina on holding successful presidential elections. We stand ready to work with Alberto Fernandez as the new President of Argentina to address the interests our countries share.
President’s Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
On October 29, Secretary Pompeo chaired the second meeting of the President’s Interagency Task Force t oMonitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. The Task Force meeting underscored the Administration’s strong commitment to combat human trafficking and inspire engagement across the federal government throughout the following year.
.@SecPompeo chaired the Trump Administration’s 2nd meeting of the President’s Interagency Task Force on #humantrafficking. He also announced investments in the Program to End Modern Slavery, totaling $75M, making it @statedept's largest anti-trafficking program. #EndTrafficking pic.twitter.com/f0ipmQl7ku— Morgan Ortagus (@statedeptspox) October 29, 2019
Secretary Pompeo Comments on Political Situation in Lebanon
On October 29, in light of Prime Minister Hariri’s resignation, the United States called on Lebanon’s political leaders to urgently facilitate the formation of a new government that can build a stable, prosperous, and secure Lebanon that is responsive to the needs of its citizens.
Secretary Pompeo Congratulates Next IAEA Director General
On October 29, Secretary Pompeo congratulated Ambassador Rafael Grossi of Argentina on his election as the next IAEA Director General. The United States strongly supports the IAEA in all aspects of its mission and stands ready to assist Ambassador Grossi in ensuring that the Agency is prepared to meet the growing challenges of the 21st century.
State Department Expresses Condolences on Passing of Sadako Ogata
On October 30, the State Department, along with our international partners and donor governments, remembered the life and work of Sadako Ogata, former UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), who led the agency from 1991 to 2000.
Secretary Pompeo Speaks on U.S.-China Relations at Hudson Institute
On October 30, Secretary Pompeo delivered remarks on “The China Challenge” at the Hudson Institute’s Herman Kahn Award Gala in New York City, New York.
We accommodated China’s rise, in the hope that they would become more free. In response, the CCP took advantage of our goodwill. Now, @realDonaldTrump is facing the reality of CCP hostility to the U.S. and our values. We must engage China as it is, not as we wish it to be. pic.twitter.com/MSGxlBex51— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) October 31, 2019
Meetings with Global Leaders
Secretary Pompeo Imposes New Sanctions on Iran and Extends Nuclear Restrictions
In a press statement on October 31, Spokesperson Ortagus shared that Secretary Pompeo is continuing restrictions on the Iranian regime’s nuclear program. The Secretary made two determinations with sanctions implications pursuant to Section 1245 of the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012 (IFCA): one identifying the construction sector of Iran as being controlled directly or indirectly by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC); and one identifying four strategic materials as being used in connection with Iran’s nuclear, military, or ballistic missile programs.
Foreign Ministers of the Small Group on Syria Release Joint Statement
The Foreign Ministers of Egypt, France, Germany, Jordan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America welcomed the launch of the Constitutional Committee in Geneva on October 30, 2019 and released a joint statement.
Secretary Pompeo Comments on the Cancellation of APEC Leaders’ Week Meetings and COP25 in Chile
In a statement on October 31, Secretary Pompeo expressed support Chilean President Sebastian Piñera who made the difficult decision to cancel the upcoming APEC Leaders’ Week Meetings and COP25 in Chile.
State Department Presents 2019 Secretary's Award for Corporate Excellence
On October 31, Secretary Pompeo delivered remarks and recognized four companies at the 20th Annual Ceremony of the Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE).
Today, @SecPompeo honored four U.S. companies for upholding high corporate social responsibility standards -- for doing well by doing good. Read the Secretary's remarks: https://t.co/HdAHsbVOxg | More: https://t.co/Pk1qnv9hfq #SecStateACE pic.twitter.com/wO53dNxudx— Department of State (@StateDept) November 1, 2019
State Department Releases Annual Country Reports on Counterterrorism
On November 1, the U.S. Department of State released the 2018 Country Reports on Terrorism. The report covers developments in countries in which acts of terrorism occurred, countries that are state sponsors of terrorism, and countries determined by the Secretary to be of particular interest in the global war on terror.
Today, @StateDeptCT Ambassador Nathan Sales briefed the media on the release of the Country Reports on Terrorism 2018. Watch his full remarks. https://t.co/re88smFd4I #CRT2018 pic.twitter.com/2jNTN1epTF— Department of State (@StateDept) November 1, 2019
State Department Announces Secretary Pompeo's Upcoming Travel to Germany
The State Department announced that Secretary Pompeo will travel to Germany from November 6-8 to underscore important bilateral relationships, meet with key leaders, and commemorate the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.
Excited to travel to #Germany, where I will meet with German leaders, and celebrate 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall & the end of the Cold War. We continue to stand with our Allies and partners for freedom and democracy worldwide. #FreedomIsntFree— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) November 1, 2019
Secetary Pompeo Comments on the Situation in Iraq
In a statement on November 1, 2019, Secretary Pompeo urged the Government of Iraq to listen to the legitimate demands of the Iraqi people who have taken to the streets to have their voices heard.
The Government of #Iraq should listen to the legitimate demands made by the Iraqi people who have taken to the streets to have their voices heard. The U.S. supports the Iraqi people who require a genuine exercise in accountability and justice.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) November 1, 2019
Spokesperson Ortagus also commented on the situation in Iraq.
The United States is closely monitoring the situation in #Iraq and calls on all sides to reject violence. The recently imposed severe restrictions on freedom of the press and of expression must be relaxed. #Pressfreedom is inherent to democratic reform. https://t.co/xzFsdx1GpJ— Morgan Ortagus (@statedeptspox) November 1, 2019
Editor’s Note: This entry is also published in the U.S. Department of State’s publication on Medium.