Washington DC, 20 December 2022 (TDI): The United States (US) Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, held an official meeting with the Foreign Minister of Malta, Ian Borg on Monday.

Maritime security in the Mediterranean, as well as Malta’s future term as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), were among the topics discussed.

The dignitaries also discussed ways to strengthen the relationship between both countries, which is 60 years old. They stressed the significance of remaining united in efforts to support Ukraine.

Also read: Statement of the Order of Malta at 11th ESS

Remarks by representatives

Antony Blinken talked about the burgeoning relationship between US & Malta. In this vein, he added, “We have a strong partnership with Malta, one that on a bilateral basis is growing even stronger.”

“We are welcoming Malta as a member of the UN Security Council starting in January. Virtually all of the critical issues that we have to contend with are going through the council, so I look forward to our collaboration there.” Blinken highlighted.

Minister Borg told Blinken that he was very pleased to see a growing number of US investors choosing Malta as a base for their business operations. He said, “Malta & US share the desire to uphold the international rules-based order, with the UN”.

While discussing peace in the Mediterranean region, the Minister reiterated, “Peace is indivisible. The Mediterranean is one of the regions facing threats. That is why we will continue to support all efforts for anything that can contribute towards peace.”

Also read: Mediterranean: Fragile but Pivotal

Borg also took the opportunity to condemn Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. Along these lines, he noted, “We are not standing idle.

We continue to reiterate in the strongest terms possible our condemnation of the unprovoked invasion of Russia in Ukraine.”

US-Malta diplomatic ties

Malta and the US established full diplomatic ties following Malta’s independence in 1964. Both governments enjoy close relations and are close partners on regional issues involving North Africa and Europe.

Malta currently hosts the US-cosponsored International Institute for Justice and the Rule of Law. Through their partnership with the Central Mediterranean Security Initiative, Malta is combating transnational crime in the Mediterranean.

It is pertinent to note that Maltese citizens can travel to the US visa-free for tourist and business purposes for stays of up to 90 days under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).