Following the meeting with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said:
Thank you Secretary of State Pompeo for your hospitality and your welcome.
I’m personally honoured and delighted to be out here in Washington for my first official visit to the Administration, so soon after my appointment.
When we look at the historical perspective that you have sketched out, the way we see it is that for the last seven decades the alliance between the UK and the United States, from trade to security cooperation, has helped shape the world for the better.
On defence, security and intelligence our countries trust each other more deeply. We work together more closely than any others. We in the UK really prize that relationship. We value it enormously and we really appreciate, both from the Administration but also from the personal remarks you and the President made, that the friendship that we have between the UK and the US is something that we prize and we look forward to nurturing in the weeks, months and years ahead.
Dominic Raab holds joint press conference with Mike Pompeo
As you mentioned, we had this Brexit issue preoccupying us in the UK. This Government, this Cabinet, is absolutely resolved, determined, to leave the EU at the end of October.
We will stay good friends, good neighbours, with our European partners. But we are at the same time determined to seize the global opportunities beyond Europe for the United Kingdom.
Of course, America is our single largest bilateral trading partner. President Trump has made clear again that he wants an ambitious free trade agreement with the UK. So I hope we can make that happen as soon as possible after we leave the EU on the 31st of October.
In our meeting today, Mike [Pompeo] and I discussed a whole range of international issues. He’s mentioned Brexit and trade, security issues from Afghanistan and Syria and the Strait of Hormuz. We talked about a range of other issues. And I look forward to working with you, Mike, on all of that range of issues. And you’re absolutely right to say we are going to put a lot of hard work in on both sides to make further progress.
Thank you once again for your very warm welcome. I really appreciate it.
And I’m confident that we can take the UK-US relationship from strength to strength.