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Media: Blinken leaves OSCE North Macedonia meeting before Lavrov arrives

by Martin Fornusek November 30, 2023 8:32 AM 1 min read
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken meets North Macedonian Foreign Minister Bujar Osmai on the eve of the OSCE summit in Skopje, North Macedonia, on Nov. 29, 2023. (Secretary Antony Blinken/X)
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U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken left the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) meeting in Skopje before the arrival of his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported on Nov. 30.

Blinken arrived in Skopje on the evening of Nov. 29, shortly before the start of the two-day meeting of OSCE foreign ministers hosted by the organization's presiding country, North Macedonia.

The U.S. chief diplomat met with North Macedonian Foreign Minister Bujar Osmani and attended an informal dinner, during which the OSCE representatives reportedly discussed Russia's aggression against Ukraine.

Blinken departed for Israel after the dinner and before the arrival of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and the rest of the Russian delegation.

Representatives of several OSCE members, including Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and his counterparts from the Baltic countries, said they would boycott the meeting due to the presence of the Russian delegation.

The OSCE was formed in the 1970s as the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe, which provided a platform for dialogue between the Eastern Bloc and Western Bloc during the Cold War.

Baltic foreign ministers to boycott OSCE meeting over Russian delegation’s presence
The foreign ministers of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania released a joint statement on Nov. 28 saying they will boycott the upcoming Organization for Security and Co-operation (OSCE) meeting due to the planned attendance of a delegation from Russia.
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