US secretary of state Antony Blinken immediately got to work. As soon as he was confirmed for his post on 26 January by a 78-22 vote of the US Senate, he got on the phone to introduce himself to his new colleagues.
Like his predecessors, the first calls went to Canada and Mexico, America’s neighbours to the north and south. Canada’s premier Justin Trudeau was also president Joe Biden and vice president Kamala Harris’s first call abroad.
But it’s the first calls that Blinken made afterwards that were noteworthy, hinting at possible policy shifts during the Biden administration and providing clumps of diplomatic tea leaves for journalists and commentators to decipher.
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