Minister of State Niels Annen is travelling to the US for political talks from 14 to 19 November 2021 and is due to meet Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, among other officials. The talks in Washington, DC will focus on transatlantic relations as well as the situation in the Middle East. In New York, Minister of State Annen will meet UN Secretary-General António Guterres, while Afghanistan will be the focus of the discussions at the United Nations.
Minister of State Annen issued the following statement today (14 November) prior to his departure for the US:
It has been possible to restart transatlantic relations under President Joe Biden. The transatlantic partnership and NATO are an indispensable part of our security. Together with our partners and the United Nations, we are committed to preserving and strengthening the rules-based international order.
The United Nations is playing a prominent role especially in Afghanistan. Since the seizure of power by the Taliban, the humanitarian situation of the people in Afghanistan has worsened dramatically. Just under 23 million people are at acute risk of famine. Over ten million Afghans have been displaced within their own country or have fled to neighbouring countries. Germany has therefore made an additional 600 million euro available for humanitarian assistance, 350 million of which is from the budget of the Federal Foreign Office. The overwhelming majority of these funds is being directly deployed to support people in need in the region via UN organisations such as the World Food Programme (WFP) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).
Aside from humanitarian assistance, Germany is continuing to work to facilitate the safe and unhindered departure of people from the country for whom it has a special responsibility as well as to promote respect for human and especially women’s rights and the development of inclusive political and social processes in Afghanistan.
Following his political talks, Minister of State Annen will join Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier on his visit to New York.