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ARGENTINA | 23-02-2024 10:33

Blinken arrives in Argentina for meeting with President Milei

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrives in Buenos Aires ahead of a meeting with President Javier Milei.

The United States’ top diplomat Antony Blinken arrived in Buenos Aires on Thursday night ahead of a meeting with President Javier Milei that will cap off the end of a whirlwind tour of Latin America.

The US secretary of state travelled to Argentina after participating in a meeting of G20 foreign ministers in Brazil hosted by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

Blinken's visit comes amid rising social tension in Argentina as the austerity measures of Milei's government kick in.

Milei, whose aggressive style and controversial remarks have drawn the eye of international observers, assumed the Presidency in December. After meeting with Blinken, the La Libertad Avanza leader is due to fly to Washington DC to attend the meeting of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), the Republican summit that boosted former US president Donald Trump’s successful run to the White House.

Trump, who is running again this year, is due to appear at CPAC, which began two days ago.  Organisers have yet to confirm if the Republican leader will meet with Milei, which would provide a photo opportunity for both leaders, who have both spoken well of each other in the past.

Despite this, the Democratic administration of current US President Joe Biden has been collaborating with Argentina, whom it considers a potential ally, especially given Milei’s vocal support of Israel, which is immersed in its war against the Islamist movement Hamas in Gaza.

"We want to be Argentina's partner of choice," Under Secretary of State for Latin America Brian Nichols recently told reporters.

The United States is also seeking the persuade Milei to buy US fighter jets over Chinese aircraft as part of the new president’s plans to modernise Argentina’s Air Force, project, Nichols added.

The US Embassy in Buenos Aires welcomed Blinken to Buenos Aires in a post on social meida,

"In Buenos Aires, Secretary Blinken will meet with Argentine President Javier Milei to discuss bilateral and global issues, including sustainable economic growth, our shared commitment to human rights and democratic governance, critical minerals, and enhancing trade and investment for the benefit of both countries," said the Embassy in a post on X.

 

– TIMES/AFP
 

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