The United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken says South Africa remains a strategic partner on the African continent. During his working visit to South Africa on Monday, Blinken touched on trade, global politics and security.
The South African International Minister, Naledi Pandor and her counterpart from the US also weighed in on the current war in Ukraine, the situation in the Middle East and US-China strained relations.
The two leaders held marathon meetings privately where they were engaged in frank discussions.
The United States of America and other Western countries have raised concern about South Africa’s stance on the war in Ukraine. The US says it still maintains that Russia is the aggressor.
South Africa, however, says this war needs leadership around the globe to push for peaceful resolution without taking sides.
Another burning issue is a conflict in the Middle East that has been raging on between Israel and Palestine.
Minister Naledi Pandor lambasted the international community for ignoring the suffering Palestinian people while Antony Blinken was diplomatic. He maintains the US policy of a two-state solution.
On China, the two countries also have different stances.
VIDEO: International Relations Minister, Naledi Pandor hosts U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in SA
Ahead of his arrival in east Africa, Blinken says it is important that the current conflict in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is stopped.
Thousands have fled homes and many killed with the recent report of M23 rebels’ rain of terror in that part of the DRC.
The are fears that a current stand-off between DRC and Rwanda may lead to security instability in the Great lakes region.
The US Secretary of State and SA Minister of International Relations have both sent best wishes to Kenyans as they go to the polls. Both leaders acknowledged a need for Kenya to hold peaceful elections.
Kenya is the largest trading partner of South Africa in East Africa and a strategic partner to the US in fighting terrorism in the horn of Africa.
Blinken is also to visit the DRC and Rwanda – as Washington seeks to improve relations with African countries.