Biden, leaders of India, Japan, Australia commit to 'free, open, secure and prosperous' Indo-Pacific in joint op-ed

Biden, leaders of India, Japan, Australia commit to 'free, open, secure and prosperous' Indo-Pacific in joint op-ed

President BidenJoe BidenHouse clears bill to provide veterans with cost-of-living adjustment On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default To reduce poverty, stop burdening the poor: What Joe Manchin gets wrong about the child tax credit MORE joined the leaders of India, Japan and Australia in committing to a “free, open, secure and prosperous” Indo-Pacific region in a Washington Post op-ed published Saturday.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison teamed up with Biden in a vow to invest in the “region in need” amid the climate crisis, coronavirus pandemic and other issues confronting the zone.

The leaders pointed to the 2004 tsunami that struck the area, prompting the four democratic countries, called “the Quad,” to work together for the first time to respond to the disaster. 

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“Now, in this new age of interconnection and opportunity throughout the Indo-Pacific, we are again summoned to act together in support of a region in need,” the countries’ leaders wrote. 

The four leaders expressed their goals to obtain an “accessible and dynamic” Indo-Pacific region that promotes the “freedom of navigation,” “peaceful resolution of disputes” and the ability for all countries “to make their own political choices, free from coercion.” They noted this ideal vision has “increasingly been tested” in recent years. 

Biden, Modi, Suga and Morrison pledged to coordinate to enhance the Paris climate agreement and climate goals around the globe and to resolve the coronavirus pandemic through ensuring the accessibility of vaccines.  

“Ending and recovering from the pandemic, standing up to climate change, and advancing our shared regional vision will not be easy,” they wrote. “We know we cannot and will not succeed without coordination and cooperation.” 

The leaders also noted that the Quad would welcome other “like-minded partners dedicated to advancing a common vision and to ensuring peace and prosperity.”

“We know we can provide for the safety and prosperity of our people at home by confronting global crises together, with purpose and resolve,” they said. “We summon from tragedy the strength and resilience to unify and overcome. And we recommit ourselves, once again, to an Indo-Pacific region that is free, open, secure and prosperous.”

The Biden administration’s commitment to international partnership serves as a contrast to the Trump administration, which prioritized a U.S.-centric approach through leaving world organizations and agreements, such as the Paris climate agreement.