Readout: Minister of Foreign Affairs holds first bilateral meeting with U.S. Secretary of State
Today, the Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Foreign Affairs, met virtually with Antony Blinken, U.S. Secretary of State, to advance work on the Roadmap for a Renewed U.S.-Canada Partnership launched by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and President Joe Biden following their virtual meeting on February 23, 2021.
The meeting reinforced that Canadians and Americans are stronger when they work together.
Minister Garneau and Secretary Blinken discussed the challenges facing people in North America and the world due to COVID-19. They acknowledged the unprecedented action required in Canada and the United States to combat the pandemic, support citizens, stabilize economies and address climate change.
As Canada and the United States build back from the pandemic, Minister Garneau and Secretary Blinken reaffirmed the need to reject protectionism and preserve their countries’ shared prosperity by protecting the integrity of cross-border supply chains.
Agreement was found on the need to coordinate approaches to the current global challenges, notably those presented by China and the Middle East, including Iran. Minister Garneau underlined the importance of getting answers and justice for the families of the victims of flight PS752.
As agreed upon by President Biden and Prime Minister Trudeau, both leaders are working on a future joint meeting of foreign and defence ministers and secretaries in which continental security cooperation will be discussed in greater depth.
Minister Garneau and Secretary Blinken also agreed on a shared commitment to achieve collective action and promote democracy, human rights and the rule of law through regional and multilateral institutions. This includes working together toward a global democracy summit aimed at reversing negative trends affecting democracies and supporting multilateral organizations that promote democracy as part of their mandate.
As outlined in the roadmap, Minister Garneau and Secretary Blinken looked for ways to more closely align both countries' approaches to China, including to address the challenges it presents to our collective interest and to the international rules-based order, including its coercive and unfair economic practices, national security challenges, and human rights abuses, while cooperating with China on areas where it is in our interest, such as climate change. They agreed to work together to secure the release of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor who are being arbitrarily detained in China.
Furthermore, Minister Garneau and Secretary Blinken discussed the importance of Canada-United States cooperation in the Americas.
The two discussed the dire situation in Venezuela and agreed to work together alongside the international community supporting Venezuelans to address this crisis and the human suffering it is causing.
Both reaffirmed a commitment to address human rights and needed reforms in Cuba and to ensure the upcoming electoral process in Haiti is credible, inclusive and transparent. Minister Garneau and Secretary Blinken look forward to the next Summit of the Americas, which the United States will host, as an opportunity to work together and with others in the hemisphere to set a unifying agenda focused on recovering from the pandemic’s multi-dimensional impacts and reinforcing democratic governance. Minister Garneau offered Canada’s support in addressing the root causes of irregular migration in the hemisphere.
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