☷Secretary Antony J Blinken And Czech Republic Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský Before Their Meeting United States Department of State
U.S. Department of State ( By Press Release office)
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SECRETARY BLINKEN: Good evening , everyone . It’s a pleasure to welcome Foreign Minister Lipavský here to the State Department , to Washington . The United States and the Czech Republic are longtime strong allies and partners across so many issues , but we’ve seen the strength of that alliance and partnership right now in the face of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine . The Czech Republic has been a remarkable supporter of Ukraine in this effort . It has taken in more than 300 , 000 refugees from Ukraine , making it the “home” in quotation marks for Ukraine refugees , one of the largest in Europe beyond the immediate border states . And it has been a staunch partner in NATO as we work to shore up NATO’s defenses against possible Russian aggression . So in these ways and so many more , as well as assuming the presidency of the European Union this summer , this is a vital time for the work that we’re doing together . It’s great to have you here . There’s another thing that brings you here that is greatly appreciating and quite frankly moving to me , and that is tomorrow the services for Madeleine Albright , a proud daughter of the Czech Republic but also of course of the United States , a person greatly revered in this building , in this institution . I’m grateful to you , Jan , for being here at this time as well – all of you . FOREIGN MINISTER LIPAVSKY: Mr . Secretary , Antony , thank you for this opportunity to meet and reiterate our good – great – relationship . And we are meeting in extraordinary time . The Putin wars against Ukraine , it’s something we have not witnessed , I think , since the end of the Second World War . It’s an attempt to attack the international order , and it is very important for Central and Eastern Europe to know that we are not left alone , that being a member of NATO means that there is a commitment to care for each other and that this is a policy of the United States that we can – we can be sure that we have this partner , we have this partnership , and that you care , that the United States care about Europe . So in this extraordinary time it is really important for us to hear that and to of course see the real actions behind that , which is the delivery of not only humanitarian aid , because it’s nice to have a band - aid when something happens to you , but in a time for war we – the weapons will decide – the will and weapons will decide the result on the ground . And sadly , Putin’s mind is a product of KGB Soviet era , and he really believes in this Soviet – Soviet myth . They do not consider Ukraine a sovereign state , which means they are against the international order . And this imperialistic vision tends to snowball , so would be left to go away with aggression against Ukraine , we would pay much higher cost in the future for that , as we have seen previously in history . So I cannot stress it more and more forcefully: Thank you very much for your care for European security . SECRETARY BLINKEN: Thank you , Jan , very much . Appreciate it . Thanks , everyone .
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