Pompeo to travel to Thailand and Australia as part of Indo-Pacific efforts

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

WASHINGTON: As part of Trump Administration’s Indo-Pacific initiative, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will make another week-long sojourn to the region that would take him to Thailand, Australia and the Federated States of Micronesia.

The week-long trip begins on July 30, State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus told reporters at a news conference here, adding that it is reflective of the US desire to deepen its longstanding alliances and vibrant bilateral relations with these countries, and to reaffirm its commitment to ASEAN, which is central to America’s vision for the Indo-Pacific region.

On August 1, Pompeo will arrive in Bangkok, where he will co-chair the US Association of Southeast Asian Nations — ASEAN.

The next day, he will deliver remarks at the Siam Society on America’s economic engagement in the Asia Pacific region. Thereafter, he will participate in the East Asia Summit ministerial, the ASEAN Regional Forum ministerial and will hold a bilateral meeting with the Thai foreign minister to discuss ways to further strengthen the US-Thai alliance, Ortagus said.

On August 3, the secretary will travel from Thailand to Australia. A day later, Pompeo, along with Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, will lead the US delegation to the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations, AUSMIN.

“As a part of his AUSMIN engagement, the secretary will participate in dialogues aimed at strengthening the alliance, working shoulder to shoulder with Australia to meet global and transnational challenges, and safeguarding sovereignty in the Pacific Island countries and in Southeast Asia,” Ortagus said.

Pompeo will deliver remarks on the US-Australia relationship at the State Library of New South Wales. He will also meet the Australian prime minister to discuss continued collaboration on advancing their shared set of values, principles, and overlapping interest.

According to Ortagus, on August 5, Pompeo will travel to the Federated States of Micronesia. It will be the first ever visit by a US secretary of state to Micronesia.

On this visit, Pompeo will meet leaders of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau. PTI

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