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Biden to host leaders of Australia, Japan and India on September 24 – US official




US President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, not pictured, participate in a virtual meeting with leaders of Asia-Pacific countries at the White House in Washington, USA, March 12, 2021. REUTERS / Tom Brenner

WASHINGTON, Sept. 13 (Reuters) – US President Joe Biden will hold a first in-person summit of leaders of “Quad” countries – Australia, India, Japan and the United States – next week, a senior US official told Reuters on Monday. . .

The summit will be held at the White House on September 24, the official said. The Prime Ministers of Australia, India and Japan – Scott Morrison, Narendra Modi and Yoshihide Suga – are expected in the United States next week to attend the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

A virtual meeting of leaders of Quad countries, who seek to strengthen cooperation in the face of China’s growing power and assertiveness, was held in March. At this meeting, leaders pledged to work closely on vaccines and the COVID-19 climate and ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific in the face of Beijing’s challenges. Read more

“Welcoming the Quad leaders demonstrates the priority of the Biden-Harris administrations to engage in the Indo-Pacific, including through new multilateral configurations to meet the challenges of the 21st century,” the senior official told Reuters. administration.

Biden’s Indo-Pacific coordinator Kurt Campbell said in July that the long-scheduled face-to-face meeting is expected to bring “breakthrough” commitments on diplomacy and vaccine infrastructure. Read more

Biden, who is pushing big infrastructure spending in his country, said in March that he suggested to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson that democratic countries should have an infrastructure plan to compete with China’s huge initiative. Belt and Road “, which involves projects from East Asia to Europe. Read more

The senior US official said the Quad Leaders “will focus on deepening our ties and promoting practical cooperation in areas such as combating COVID-19, tackling the climate crisis, partnering on emerging technologies and cyberspace, and the promotion of a free and open Indo-Pacific. . “

The first summit’s vaccine initiative was stalled after India, the world’s largest vaccine producer, was hit by a catastrophic wave of infections and halted vaccine exports.

At the March summit, the four leaders agreed that Indian drug maker Biological E Ltd will produce at least one billion doses of the coronavirus vaccine by the end of 2022, mostly for countries in Southeast Asia. East and Pacific.

Japanese magazine Kyodo News reported last week that Suga would be heading to Washington this month for the Quad meeting, even though his tenure as head of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party – and by default as Prime Minister of the Japan – ends September 30. read more

Suga became the first leader to hold a face-to-face summit between the White House and Biden in April, underscoring Japan’s central role in US efforts to confront China. Read more

The Quad meeting will come after Biden’s image has been shaken by the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. U.S. officials have said that ending the United States’ longest war would allow the administration to divert resources and attention to tackling issues related to China. Read more

Reporting by David Brunnstrom; edited by Grant McCool

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.




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