Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod stands next to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken as he arrives for meetings.
Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod stands next to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken as he arrives for meetings at the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Eigtveds Pakhus, in Copenhagen, Denmark, May 17, 2021.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is in Denmark for talks Monday about economic, security and climate issues, as well as the Biden administration’s ongoing push to boost ties with U.S. allies.

“Looking forward to deepening our partnership on mutual goals including combatting the climate crisis, enhancing defense cooperation, ensuring energy security, and partnering in the Arctic,”Blinken said after meeting with Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen.

The top U.S. diplomat also had an audience with Queen Margrethe II and was scheduled to tour a quantum materials lab at the University of Copenhagen. 

After Denmark, Blinken heads to Reykjavik, Iceland where he will take part in the Arctic Council Ministerial meeting. 

Blinken said Copenhagen is “the first stop in a trip that will place a focus on strengthening NATO, partnering in the Arctic, confronting the climate crisis, and addressing other global challenges we face.”

On the sidelines of the talks in Iceland, Blinken is due to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in what the State Department says is an opportunity to discuss building a “more predictable relationship with Russia” and areas of mutual interest. 

“We were able to do the extension of the important New START Treaty for five years right off the bat, but we also look at areas where Russia has behaved aggressively and undertaken malign efforts for which, as the president said, there will be a cost,” a senior State Department official told reporters.  “We're not going to stand idly by.  We don't seek to escalate, we are simply, again, looking for a more predictable, stable relationship.  And I think there are areas where we can discuss these things with Foreign Minister Lavrov.”