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SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Ann, so good to see you.  Thank you for being here.  We’ve already had the opportunity to work together on a number of things, and that’s a reflection of the fact that the United States and Sweden are working together in so many different areas, whether it’s climate, whether it’s COVID, whether it’s on security matters.  And, of course, your chairmanship of the OSCE has been particularly critical and important.  I very much look forward to talking about that.

And of course, we’re here together for the Arctic Council and a shared commitment to continuing to maintain this region as one of peaceful cooperation, whether it’s on climate, whether it’s on science, technology, whether it’s on supporting indigenous peoples in the region.  So I very much look forward to the opportunity to talk about that and the agenda we have, but mostly it’s good finally to be face to face and get to work.  So thank you.

FOREIGN MINISTER LINDE:  Thank you very much.  I’m also very happy to be here and to be able to speak to you in person.  And I think it’s very clear that now the United States is tapped in fully with multilateral cooperation, not least when it comes to environment and climate, which is one of the main issues here that we’re – discussion in the Arctic Council.  I always say that why are you in the Arctic Council: peace, climate, people – that’s the reason.  And we want to keep it low tension.  And I hope to be able both to discuss these issues, but also as – me being the chairperson-in-office of OSCE, there’s many conflicts where the United States also are involved, be it the central Caucasus, southern Caucasus, or Central Asia, or Nagorno-Karabakh.  And I think it’s important for us to discuss also our different views on these.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  I look forward to it.  Thank you very much.

U.S. Department of State

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