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Blinken speaks to Saudi minister, repeats US name for rights progress

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FILE PHOTO: U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks about infrastructure funding on the College of Maryland’s A. James Clark College of Engineering in School Park, MD, U.S., August 9, 2021. Patrick Semansky/Pool by way of REUTERS

WASHINGTON — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke with Saudi International Minister Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud on Monday and repeated a name for progress on human rights.

A State Division assertion mentioned Blinken and the Saudi minister mentioned regional safety and the assault final month on the tanker Mercer Road within the Arabian Sea, which Washington blames on Iran, and different regional points.

Additionally they mentioned bolstering safety cooperation, Saudi help for a complete ceasefire in Yemen and the necessity for fast steps to mitigate Yemen’s humanitarian disaster, it mentioned.

“Secretary Blinken emphasised the necessity for progress on human rights,” the assertion added, echoing a U.S. assertion from July after Saudi Arabia’s deputy protection minister held talks in Washington with U.S. nationwide safety adviser Jake Sullivan.

The State Division assertion made no point out of the 2018 homicide of Washington Put up columnist and Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi, which came about when President Joe Biden’s predecessor, Donald Trump, was in workplace.

Biden shook the connection with Saudi Arabia, an in depth U.S. ally, by permitting the discharge in February of an unclassified U.S. intelligence report that discovered that Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is called MbS, permitted the operation during which Khashoggi was killed.

Riyadh denies that MbS was concerned.

Biden additionally ended U.S. help for offensive operations by the Saudi-led coalition preventing in Yemen. However he has deflected calls by lawmakers and human rights teams for sanctions on MbS.

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