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Secretary Pompeo At a Press Conference

Article’s tags: Occupied Territories, International Law

SECRETARY POMPEO: Good morning, everyone. Good to be with you all today. I




MS ORTAGUS: Humeyra, last question.

QUESTION: Hello, Mr. Secretary.


QUESTION: Hi. Israel may be annexing parts of the West Bank and Jordan Valley in a week, and Jordan has said annexation could kill its peace treaty with Israel. UAE’s Ambassador to the U.S. Otaiba said it would end any hopes of normalizing relations with the Gulf and Arab states. So my question is: How concerned are you about potential ramifications of annexation? And do you favor an incremental approach or an immediate annexation of 30 percent, as proposed in the White House peace plan? And very quickly, are you trying to discourage or encourage European nations to keep the United States off a list of countries for a travel ban? They said that they’re not looking to open travel with the U.S. when they reopen next month. And how can you argue that given the high rate of COVID here? Thank you.

SECRETARY POMPEO: So as for your second question, we’ve been working with countries all across the world, including our friends in Europe and the EU proper, to determine how it is we can best safely reopen international travel. It’s important for the United States to get Europeans the capacity to travel back to the United States. It’s important, very important for the Europeans to fully reconnect with the American economy as well. I think leaders all across those two places understand the importance of this, and so we’ve been working with them for quite some time on this. I am confident that we will find a set of conditions that create sufficient health and safety protections, sufficient travel opportunity that will get the private sector, that’s important in this too.

We have to make sure that we have all of the elements in place to reopen travel between the EU and the United States. We’re working on finding the right way to do that, the right timing to do it, the right tactics to have in place. We certainly don’t want to reopen a plan that jeopardizes the United States from people traveling here, and we certainly don’t want to cause problems anyplace else. I’m very confident that in the coming weeks we’ll figure that out as between not only the United States and the EU, but the United States and other parts of the world too. The State Department, the Department of Transportation, Homeland Security are all working to develop plans and methods by which we can begin to get global travel back in place.

Your first question was about Israel. We unveiled a Middle East peace vision some number of months ago now, and we’re continuing to work down that path. Decisions about Israeli and extending sovereignty in other places are decisions for the Israelis to make, and we are talking to all of the countries in the region about how it is we can manage this process for our end state objective. It’s, I think, the objective that the prime minister has certainly acknowledged he wants, right. He wants our Middle East peace vision to be successful. The Gulf states have all indicated that they are hopeful that we can put that in place. I regret only that the Palestinian Authority has refused to participate in that, right. They simply have rejected this out of hand. We simply asked that they come to the negotiating table based on what’s outlined in the Vision for Peace, and they have chosen not to. They have chosen to threaten, to bluster, to assert that they’re going to deny the ability to do security – that’s not good for the Palestinian people. It’s dangerous for the people that live in those places too.

What we’ve asked is for them to come together, for Israel and the Palestinian people to come to the table to negotiate a path forward and to find a resolution to this decades-long challenge. I remain hopeful that in the coming weeks we can begin to make real progress towards achieving that.

QUESTION: Thank you, sir.

SECRETARY POMPEO: Thank you all very much. Have a good day.




MS ORTAGUS: And thanks, everybody. Have a good day.

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