U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Natan Sharansky in Washington, DC.
Sharansky is a former Israeli politician, human rights activist and served as the chairman of the Jewish Agency from 2009 to 2018. He was a 'refusenik' in the Soviet Union, meaning he was refused permission to leave the country and make aliyah to Israel, and spent nine years in Soviet prisons.
Sharansky currently serves as the chairman of the Institute for the Study of Global Antisemitism and Policy.
Former U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman joined the meeting.
The State Department released a statement saying that they “discussed global challenges for democracy, the plight of political prisoners around the world, and the importance of combatting antisemitism in all of its forms, including Holocaust distortion and denial.”
Sharansky said: “The United States of America plays a leading role in protecting and promoting human rights and democratic values. The fight against antisemitism, manifestations of xenophobia and intolerance, for me, is a marker of humanity’s development.”
Blinken tweeted his own statement about the meeting.
It was an honor to meet renowned Soviet dissident and human rights defender @NatanSharansky. The United States echoes his call for the release of political prisoners around the world, and we join him in condemning anti-Semitism in all its forms.— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken) July 21, 2021
The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.