Denying Biden victory, Pompeo heads to Europe, Mideast

By: AP | Washington |

November 13, 2020 11:40:46 am

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo walks to board an plane to go away for Maldives, in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2020. Pompeo plans to press Sri Lanka to push again towards Chinese language assertiveness, which U.S. officers complain is highlighted by predatory lending and improvement initiatives that profit China greater than the presumed recipients. The Chinese language Embassy in Sri Lanka denounced Pompeo’s go to to the island even earlier than he arrived there, denouncing a senior U.S. official’s warning that the nation needs to be cautious of Chinese language funding. (AP Picture/Eranga Jayawardena, Pool)

After refusing to acknowledge President Donald Trump’s loss in final week’s election, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is leaving Friday on a visit to Europe and the Center East, the place leaders have all congratulated former vp Joe Biden for his victory.

The seven-nation journey is geared toward shoring up the outgoing Trump administration’s priorities, notably its anti-China and -Iran insurance policies, and can embrace visits to Israeli settlements within the West Financial institution which were prevented by earlier secretaries of state.

However the normal overseas coverage points are more likely to be overshadowed by the extraordinary second in world politics: A lot of the world has accepted the outcomes of America’s election, whereas the USA’ high diplomat _ in addition to its president and far of his Republican Occasion _ haven’t.

Pompeo’s journey comes days after he raised eyebrows by dismissing a reporter’s query in regards to the presidential transition by saying “there will likely be a clean transition to a second Trump administration.“ He gave the impression to be talking in jest and went on to say, in a extra severe tone, that the world needs to be assured that the State Division will likely be useful and profitable with the president who takes workplace Jan. 20. However these feedback and subsequent statements in interviews with conservative media didn’t acknowledge that it’s Biden who will change into president then.

Pompeo’s weeklong tour takes him to France, Turkey, Georgia, Israel, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. The leaders of every of these international locations have provided public congratulations to Biden.

4 of these international locations _ France, Turkey, Georgia and Qatar _ have had a fractious relationship with the Trump administration and it was not clear if Pompeo would maintain public engagements with any of their leaders. Pompeo has had a notoriously frosty relationship with the press and it was additionally unclear if he deliberate to take questions from reporters.

Consistent with Trump’s refusal to concede and orders for Cupboard businesses to not cooperate with the Biden transition group, the State Division has not been concerned with facilitating Biden’s calls to overseas leaders, in line with officers acquainted with the method.

Pompeo’s ardent assist for Trump, who has claimed with out proof that the election was beset by fraud, threatens to harm America’s standing in making pronouncements about different international locations’ democratic shortcomings.

On Thursday, Pompeo weighed in on Hong Kong’s legislature, and he has in latest weeks denounced alleged electoral issues in Belarus, Tanzania and Ivory Coast.
But, at his information convention Tuesday, Pompeo roundly dismissed a query about whether or not Trump’s unfounded protests have created issues for U.S. credibility. “You requested a query that’s ridiculous,“ he responded. “This division cares deeply to ensure that elections world wide are secure and safe and free and honest, and my officers threat their lives to make sure that that occurs.”

Biden has already spoken with the leaders of Australia, Canada, Japan and South Korea and fielded congratulatory notes on social media and elsewhere from others.

But, Pompeo stated he would keep it up as if there was no change.

“I’m the secretary of state,“ he stated. “I’m getting calls from all the world over. These persons are watching our election. They perceive that now we have a authorized course of. They perceive that this takes time.”



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