Hi. Good morning, everybody. Thanks for joining the call. I’m pleased to have the opportunity to preview the Secretary’s trip to Brazil and Colombia early next week. The Secretary will be leading the presidential delegation to the inauguration of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, and then we’ll visit Cartagena, Colombia.
U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo will travel to Brazil and Colombia from December 31-January 2.
From December 31-January 2, Secretary Pompeo will lead the Presidential Delegation to Brasilia to attend the inauguration of Jair Bolsonaro, President-elect of Brazil.
On December 22, the Venezuelan Navy aggressively stopped ExxonMobil contracted vessels operating under an oil exploration agreement with the Cooperative Republic of Guyana in its Exclusive Economic Zone.
In response to Russia’s dangerous escalation and unjustified November 25 attack on three Ukrainian naval vessels near the Kerch Strait, the Department of State, subject to Congressional approval, will provide an additional $10 million in Foreign Military Financing to further build Ukraine’s naval capabilities.
Today the United States Government announced historic action to confront the illegal immigration crisis facing the United States. We notified the Government of Mexico that the United States is invoking Section 235(b)(2)(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. We will begin implementation immediately.
Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you, Special Envoy de Mistura, for your briefing. Staffan, on behalf of the United States, I express our sincere gratitude for your four and a half years of service as the UN envoy in Syria. We greatly appreciate your tireless effort that you put into this work and your efforts to bring peace and stability to Syria. We wish you all the best. The United States also looks forward to maintaining a close and constructive relationship with your successor Geir Pedersen as he assumes his role as the Special Envoy.
I am delivering this statement on behalf of the following participating States: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Thank you, Mr. Chair.
The United States joins others in welcoming Professor Benedek to the Permanent Council.
Today the United States welcomes the expert, fact-finding report on human rights violations and abuses in the Russian Federation’s Republic of Chechnya and impunity for them, which we believe to be a particularly serious threat to Russia’s fulfillment of its Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) human dimension commitments.
Five years ago, ISIS was a very powerful and dangerous force in the Middle East, and now the United States has defeated the territorial caliphate.