Antony Blinken: Senate Confirms Biden Secretary of State


Blinken, a longtime Biden ally, was approved by 78–22 votes.

With Blinken confirmed, President Joe Biden now has several key members of his national security team. Apart from national security adviser Jake Sullivan – who does not require Senate confirmation – Evil Haines, director of National Intelligence, was confirmed on opening day and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was confirmed last Friday.

His confirmation was welcomed by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, as well as by the professional association for the US Foreign Service.

“The leadership of our country’s oldest cabinet agency, which is the oldest cabinet agency in our country, represents a major responsibility,” the US Foreign Service Association (AFSA) said in a statement. “As we have done for our predecessors, AFSA has welcomed our congratulations and Secretary Blinken. We wish the Secretary and her team all the best in the years to come. AFSA and its members to strengthen the Career Foreign Service Pledged to work with them. And protect and grow the institution that is American diplomacy. “

The 71st Secretary of State faces challenges to restore America’s position in the world and to reestablish a department where many felt demoted under the previous administration.

He will also be at the forefront of a sharp turn from “America First” foreign policy to a focus on multilateralism and coalitions.

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During his confirmation hearing last week, Blinken promised to re-engage with Congress over major foreign policy concerns.

He was pressurized on Iran and attempts to restart the Iran nuclear deal. While Blinken clarified that the Biden administration felt the world was safe with the Iran nuclear deal, he did not propose a plan to restart the Joint Comprehensive Action Plan (JCPOA) from which the Trump administration withdrew in 2018 Gone.

“The president-elect believes that if Iran returns to compliance, we will too,” Blinken said at his hearing one day before the inauguration last week. “But, we will use this as a platform with our partners and partners, who will once again be on the same side with us, looking for a long and strong agreement. And also, as you and the chairman rightly pointed out Is, up for grabs. These other issues, especially in relation to missiles and Iran’s volatile activities. That would be the objective. “

Blinken said that I think we have come a long way from there, once the presidential-election we have to see what steps Iran actually takes and is ready to take.

On China, he acknowledged that President Donald Trump was “right to adopt a strict attitude towards China.”

“I disagree a lot, the way he went about it in many areas, but the core principle was right, and I think it’s really useful for our foreign policy,” Blinken said.

He said that he pledged to restore the agency he now leads, adding that he is “committed to advancing our security and prosperity by building a diplomatic corps that will fully support America in its talent and diversity.” Represents. “

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And where his predecessor Mike Pompio promised to bring “Swagger”, Blinken called for “humility and confidence”.

“Humility because we have a lot of work to do at home to increase our standing abroad. And humility because most of the world’s problems are not about us, even they affect us. We Faces great challenges. Not a single one of them can be found. One country acted alone – even as powerful as America. “But we will work with the belief that America is still a nation in any country on earth Has the ability to mobilize others for greater good than. “

Nicole Gouette and Kylie Atwood of CNN contributed to this report.

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