Suga, Biden Confirm Strengthening Bilateral Ties

Suga, Biden confirm strengthening bilateral ties

Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide and US President Joe Biden have wrapped up summit talks at the White House on Friday.

It's Biden's first in-person talks with a foreign leader since he took office.

Biden said" The United States and Japan have a big agenda ahead of us. And we're 2 important democracies in the Indo-Pacific region, and our cooperation is vital in my view and I think in both our views, to meeting the challenges facing our nations, and ensuring the future of the region to remain free, open and prosperous."

Suga said "I would like to reaffirm the strong ties between Japan and the United States. I would like to discuss a free and open Indo-Pacific and various other challenges. Also, I would like to talk about the new coronavirus, climate change and other issues confronting the international community and reaffirm cooperation between Japan and the United States."

They will also issue a formal statement.

A US official said Washington wants it to refer to peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait. It would be the first time a joint statement from the two sides touches on Taiwan in more than half a century.

Economic issues were likely to be on the agenda. The US official said Japan and the US will invest 2 billion dollars in 5G telecommunications and other technologies to counter China's growing influence.

The two leaders were also expected to discuss national security, climate change and China's alleged human rights abuses against Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities.