Secretary Antony J. Blinken and Malaysian Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah Before Their Meeting

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  Well, very good that you are here —

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you.

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  — being able to see you after a few meetings on the video.  It’s not the same.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  I agree.  It’s not.

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  It’s not the same.  It’s not the same.  But welcome again and we have lots to discuss.  Our relations of the two countries are very good.  I’m sure we can bring it to greater heights with your visit not only to Malaysia but to the region.  We really welcome you so much.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you.

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  Yes.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Well, we share that ambition.  We share the ambition to build on the good relationship we have.  If there’s any more that we can do, I look forward to discussing all of that with you, but it is very good to finally be able to connect, as I like to say, if not face to face, at least mask to mask.

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  Yeah, mask to mask.  (Laughter.)  All right.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  So thank you, and thank you for the wonderful hospitality.

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  You’re welcome.  Thank you.  Thank you for coming.  Thank you.  (Inaudible), please.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you.

FOREIGN MINISTER ABDULLAH:  Yes.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Thank you all.

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