Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued the following statement today (23 January) prior to his departure for Washington and New York:
The first ministerial debate in the United Nations Security Council since Germany’s election as a non permanent member will take place in New York. We want to play an active role in the work of the Security Council from the very start. Two priorities for Germany’s Security Council membership are already on the agenda this week. Along with our friends from the Dominican Republic, we want to make headway on the topic of climate and security. It is good that we are starting this right away in January. As a follow-up to my visit to Iraq, we are also hosting an informal meeting on the topic of women, peace and security in the Middle East.
Washington will be the first stop on my visit. It is good that we will still be able to hold talks despite the shutdown in the US. Particularly at a time of international crises we need Washington to be able to act in the fight against IS, the Syria dossier, Afghanistan, Ukraine and, of course, on disarmament. It is clear that we need the US. That is why we want to strengthen our partnership and, where necessary, redefine it. Our aim is to find new ways to work together – not new ways to oppose one another. I will also discuss the INF Treaty in Washington. Moscow must now verifiably dismantle the illegal cruise missile. It is important that we continue to liaise closely in NATO. That also holds true for a possible time without the INF Treaty.