Plane carrying Blinken breaks down in Paris

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and his delegation were forced to drive from Paris to Brussels for a NATO meeting after their aircraft experienced a mechanical issue Wednesday.

“Due to a mechanical issue with the aircraft, Secretary Blinken and the American delegation drove from Paris to Brussels to attend the NATO Foreign Ministers meeting,” a State Department spokesperson told The Hill.

The U.S. Air Force jet is an older model of a Boeing 737 that was modified for official government use, Bloomberg reported. The State Department did not mention the model of the plane. The Hill reached out to both the department and Boeing for further comment.

The trip from Paris to Brussels is about 190 miles.

Blinken was in France this week for a series of meetings with foreign leaders. On Tuesday, he he met with French President Emmanuel Macron and UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay and toured the Nexter headquarters in Versailles with French Defense Minister Sébastien Lecornu.

Earlier this year, Blinken was in Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in January when a mechanical issue grounded the plane set to bring him back to Washington. Multiple media reports at the time said the plane was a Boeing 737.

The U.S. Air Force had to get another aircraft from Brussels to get the Cabinet member home.

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