National Security

Biden national security adviser holds introductory calls with foreign counterparts

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Jake Sullivan, President Biden’s national security adviser, held his first calls with foreign counterparts from France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Japan on Thursday, the White House said. 

Sullivan held what the new administration described as “separate introductory calls” with French diplomatic adviser Emmanuel Bonne, British foreign secretary Dominic Raab, German foreign policy adviser Jan Hecker, and Shigeru Kitamura, the head of Japan’s National Security Secretariat, on Thursday, Biden’s first full day in office.

“With European partners Mr. Sullivan underscored the Biden Administration’s intention to strengthen the transatlantic alliance and affirmed our readiness to work closely with European allies on a range of shared priorities, including issues pertaining to China, Iran, and Russia,” National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne said.

Horne said that Sullivan stressed the importance of the U.S.-Japan alliance in his call with Kitamura and the new administration’s desire to address challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, China and North Korea.

The calls are expected and represent an effort by Sullivan to reach out to key foreign allies as the new administration gets underway. 

On Friday, Sullivan also spoke with Afghanistan’s national security adviser Hamdullah Mohib and communicated the new administration’s plans to review the agreement struck between the Trump administration and the Taliban last year “including to assess whether the Taliban was living up to its commitments to cut ties with terrorist groups, to reduce violence in Afghanistan, and to engage in meaningful negotiations with the Afghan government and other stakeholders.”

Separately, Biden is expected to hold his first call with a foreign leader on Friday. White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters early this week that Biden planned to speak with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“I expect they will certainly discuss the important relationship with Canada as well as [Biden’s] decision on the Keystone pipeline that he announced today,” Psaki told reporters at a briefing Wednesday.

Biden is also due to speak with Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador. 

Tags Jake Sullivan Jen Psaki Justin Trudeau

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