US, UK, Germany, France express solidarity with Lithuania amid Chinese coercion

Washington [US]: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken held a telephonic conversation with his counterparts from France, Germany and the UK, during which they highlighted their solidarity with Lithuania in the face of escalating political pressure and economic coercion by China.
In a statement, US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said: “Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke today with French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, and UK Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss”. They discussed the importance of continued coordination Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke today with French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock, and UK Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss.
The Secretary and his counterparts also discussed their shared concerns about the pace of developments in Iran’s nuclear program as time runs short for Tehran to return to the JCPOA.
“They highlighted their solidarity with Lithuania in the face of escalating political pressure and economic coercion by the People’s Republic of China and rejected those practices,” the statement read.
They also discussed Libya’s ongoing efforts to organize national elections and agreed on the importance of the electoral process advancing without delay.
The dispute between Lithuania and China began earlier this year when Lithuania withdrew from the “17+1” bloc in Eastern Europe.
Lithuania then upgraded diplomatic relations with Taiwan, becoming the only European country to permit a Taiwanese representative office.
Back in August, China recalled its ambassador from Vilnius, to which Lithuania responded reciprocally in September.

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