US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has confirmed that America no longer wants to buy Greenland.
Blinken visited the Danish Autonomous Territory at the end of a four-day trip that included a meeting of foreign ministers from countries bordering the Arctic.
âI am in Greenland because the United States deeply appreciates our partnership and wants to make it even stronger,â Antony Blinken told reporters on his final leg of the Arctic tour.
He stressed that he was not there to buy the country off, signaling a change in policy by the Trump administration. When asked if the United States has definitely ruled out any plans to buy Greenland, Blinken responded with a smile: “I can confirm that is correct.”
Former US President Donald Trump announced in August 2019 that he was considering purchasing the land mass, which is a quarter the size of the United States.
âDenmark essentially owns it,â he said at the time. âWe are very good allies with Denmark, we protect Denmark as we protect large parts of the world. So the concept came up and I said, âSure I would. Strategically, it’s interesting and we would be interested, but we’ll talk to them a bit. It’s not number 1 on the burner, I can tell you that.
The purchase would be “essentially a large real estate transaction,” he said at the time.
Trump’s proposal, described as “absurd” by the Danish government, caused a diplomatic hubbub.
Last year, the United States reopened a consulate in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, and pledged $ 12 million in aid for civilian projects.
While discussing potential additional funding, Blinken was vague about new U.S. plans, even though Greenland’s new local government had pitched the idea of ââa free trade deal earlier in the week.
âWe would like to find ways to further strengthen the business relationship,â said Blinken.
The new Prime Minister of Greenland, Mute Egede, who came to power in April, said he was “convinced that this decade will be the start of a new era in relations between our countries”.
The left-wing government, which won the snap parliamentary elections last month, is allied with a small pro-independence party, Naleraq, which has been in favor of restoring ties with the United States.
âWith Agence France-Presse