According to the White House, the purpose of President Joe Biden’s trip to South Korea and Japan is to promote a “free and open Indo-Pacific” and strengthen ties with the two Asian allies. This is Biden’s first trip to Asia since taking over the White House last year.
“The trip will bolster the Biden administration’s unwavering commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific and America’s treaty alliances with South Korea and Japan.” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said.
Also according to Jen Psaki, during the visit, Mr. Biden had bilateral meetings with Mr. Yoon Suk-yeol – who will take office as President of South Korea on May 10, and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. The meetings are expected to deepen security ties, strengthen economic ties and expand close cooperation to bring about “practical results”.
According to Bae Hyun-jin, a spokeswoman for President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol, President Joe Biden will have a three-day visit to South Korea, starting from May 20, before heading to Japan.
Bae Hyun-jin also said that South Korean President-elect Yoon Suk-yeol plans to hold talks with Biden about North Korea’s policies as well as economic security and regional and international issues.
Meanwhile, Japanese Government spokesman Hirokazu Matsuno said that Biden is expected to hold a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on May 23 and the QUAD summit will take place. on the next day.
Through a series of meetings planned during the trip, including a QUAD summit attended by the US, Japan, Australia and India, Mr Biden is likely to join the nations. The Indo-Pacific offers a response to Russia’s war in Ukraine, China’s assertiveness in the region, and North Korea’s nuclear and missile ambitions.
President Joe Biden sees the partnership of four countries in the Indo-Pacific as key amid efforts to push back against China’s growing influence in the region.
Japan is preparing for the second face-to-face meeting of QUAD leaders in the first half of this year. To date, Mr. Biden has never been to Asia as US President, he also attended the QUAD summit but took place in an online form due to the impact of COVID-19.
Earlier this month, in an online phone call with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Mr. Biden expressed his wish to hold bilateral talks in Japan on May 24. However, the official schedule of Mr. Biden’s trip to Asia has not yet been announced.
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