Blinken’s crucial visit to Saudi Arabia puts human rights in focus

Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Saudi Arabia on Wednesday to meet with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. This marks the highest-level meeting between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia since President Biden took office and comes amidst strained ties between the two countries.

Human rights are also a focus of Blinken’s visit, according to The Wall Street Journal. The Biden administration has pledged to re-evaluate its relationship with Saudi Arabia, which has been criticized for its record on human rights and its involvement in Yemen’s civil war.

Blinken’s trip to Saudi Arabia comes ahead of his visit to China, where he will embark on a high-stakes trip to address various issues between the two nations. In particular, the Biden administration has expressed concern over China’s human rights record and its assertive behavior in the South China Sea.

CNN reports that Blinken is expected to discuss regional security issues and ties between the two countries with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. This meeting represents a significant opportunity for the U.S. to address key issues with Saudi Arabia and begin repairing the strained relationship between the two countries.