Commanding Officers Loop
Camp David, Maryland
3:14 P.M. EDT
PRESIDENT BIDEN: Good afternoon, everyone, and welcome to Camp David.
If I seem like I’m happy, it’s because I am. (Laughter.) This has been a great, great meeting.
Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, I — we meet in this historic place to make a historic moment. And I believe that to be true. The — this is a new era in partnership between Japan, the Republic of Korea, and the United States — our new Camp David trilat. (Laughs.) That’s what we have here.
And — but before we dive into the progress we’ve made today — if you excuse, we used to say in the Senate, “a point of personal privilege” — I want to start by expressing my appreciation for the contribution that your countries have made toward the relief following the devastating wildfires in Hawaii. I want to thank you both on behalf of the American people.
I also want to note that my team is closely monitoring Hurricane Hilary, which is — has the potential to bring significant rain and flooding to southern California. FEMA has pre-positioned personnel and supplies in the region, and they’re ready to respond as needed. I urge everyone — everyone in the path of this storm to take precautions and listen to the guidance from state and local officials.
And you’ve heard me say it before: The Republic of Korea and Japan are capable and indispensable allies.
Now, to the purpose of why we’re here.
America’s commitment to both countries is ironclad, and my personal commitment to bringing these three nations together was real from the very beginning.
Since last summer, we’ve met on the margins of the NATO Summit in Spain, the ASEAN Summit in Cambodia, and the G7 Summit in Japan. And today, we’ve made history with the first-ever standalone summit between the leaders of our three countries, as well as our commitment to meet together on the leader level annually and to have all of our relative Cabinet-member people meet on a regular basis for — from this point on; not just this year, not next year — forever. That’s the i- — that’s the intention.
And so, I want to recognize the important work that both of you have done and the political courage — and I mean this sincerely — the political courage that you’ve both demonstrated to resolve difficult issues that would’ve stood in the way for a long time of a close relationship between Japan and Korea and with the United States.
Your leadership, with the full support of the United States, has brought us here, because each of you understands that our world stands at an inflection point — a point where we’re called to lead in new ways: to work together, to stand together. And today, I’m proud to say our nations are answering that call.
First, we’re elevating our trilateral defense collaboration to deliver in the Indo-Pacific region. That includes launching annual multidomain military exercises, bringing our trilateral defense cooperation to an unprecedented levels.
We’re doubling down on information sharing, including on the DPRK’s missile launches and cyber activities, strengthening our ballistic missile defense cooperation.
And, critically — critically, we’ve all committed to swiftly consult with each other in response to threats to any one of our countries from whatever source it occurs. That means we’ll have a hotline to share information and coordinate our responses whenever there is a crisis in the region or affecting any one of our countries.
And today, we’ve reaffirmed — all reaffirmed our shared commitment to maintaining peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and addressing ec- — and addressing economic coercion.
We’re going to continue to counter threats from the DPRK, including cryptocurrency money laundering to the tune of billions of dollars; potential arms transfer in support of Russia’s brutal war against Ukraine.
And together — together, we’re going to stand up for international law, freedom of navigation, and the peaceful resolution of disputes in the South China Sea.
Second, we’re expanding our economic cooperation to build an Ino — an Indo-Pacific that is peaceful and prosperous.
Today, we’ve committed to launch a new — what we call a “Supply Chain Early Warning System” — excuse me, a Supply Chain Early Warning System Pilot and — which will alert our nations to disruptions of certain products and materials, like critical minerals or batteries, so we can get ahead of the issues as we — they appear with the experience — that we’ve experienced in — during the pandemic.
(Referring to a piece of audio equipment.) Excuse me, this is falling off. There you go.
And — and building on the G7-led Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment, we’re deepening cooperation between our development finance institutions to mobilize more financing for quality infrastructure and secure communications technology to help low-income and middle-income countries throughout the region take on the challenges that matter most to their people.
And finally, our partnership is about building a better future for our people. That’s why we’re deepening our cooperation on global health and launching a trilateral expert exchange in support of the U.S. Cancer Moonshot initiative. That’s going to, I believe, change cancer as we know it.
It matters a great deal to me and to families all across our three countries. In the United States, we are revolutionizing the way we do cancer research. And together, the three of us, I am confident we can harness our shared spirit of innovation and end cancer as we know it.
We’re also launching a new collaboration between our National Laboratories and advance our science knowledge and technological capabilities together. As we do, we’ll work in lockstep to set the standards for safe, secure, and trustworthy emerging technology, including artificial intelligence, which a lot of work has to be done on.
Let me close with this. Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, this is the first summit I’ve hosted at Camp David as President. I can think of no more fitting location to begin the next era — our next era of cooperation — a place that has long symbolized the power of new beginnings and new possibilities.
In the months and years ahead, we’re going to continue to seize those possibilities together — unwavering in our unity and unmatched in our resolve. This is not about a day, a week, or month. This is about decades and decades of relationships that we’re building.
Mr. Prime Minister and Mr. President, I want to thank you for your leader, and I — leadership — and I say it again — for your courage that brought us together. And I look forward to working with you both of you ahead.
Now I yield to — who am I yielding to?
MODERATOR: Distinguished guests —
PRESIDENT BIDEN: There you go.
MODERATOR: — the President of the Republic of Korea.
PRESIDENT BIDEN: We needed the voice of God to tell us that. (Laughter.)
PRESIDENT YOON: (As interpreted.) First of all, I’d like to thank President Biden for his warm hospitality. It is a great pleasure to visit Camp David along with Prime Minister Kishida. Camp David is a site that bears historical significance where important diplomatic decisions were made at critical junctures of modern history.
In order to respond to today’s unprecedented polycrisis, the ties between our three countries, which are the most advanced liberal democracies in the region and major economies leading advanced technology and scientific innovation, are more important than ever.
From this moment on, Camp David will be remembered as a historic place where the Republic of Korea, the United States, and Japan proclaimed that we will bolster the rules-based international order and play key roles to enhance regional security and prosperity based on our shared values of freedom, human rights, and rule of law.
Today, we, the three leaders, held the very first standalone trilateral summit marking a new chapter in our trilateral cooperation. Today, we have agreed on the Camp David principles that will function as the enduring guidelines for our trilateral cooperation. In addition, we have developed the Spirit of Camp David, which is a document embodying the vision of our trilateral cooperation and ways to translate our will to cooperate into action.
First of all, to facilitate the stable development of our trilateral cooperation, we have built the institutional basis for the trilateral cooperation at multiple levels and sectors. In addition to making our trilateral summit regular, we have agreed to have our governments’ personnel at all levels — including foreign ministers, defense ministers, and national security advisors — meet every year to closely coordinate our trilateral cooperation.
In particular, we, the three leaders, have agreed to establish a communication channel so we can swiftly coordinate and respond together in case an urgent issue occurs in the region.
Furthermore, to bolster our trilateral strategic cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, our three countries will establish the ROK, U.S., Japan Indo-Pacific dialogue, which will discover new areas of cooperation. Also, along with the economic security dialogue led by our three countries’ NSCs, we have agreed to found a consultative body for development policy coordination and also build cooperation frameworks in various sectors including global health and women empowerment.
We have also decided to hold our ROK, U.S., and Japan Global Leadership Youth Summit to strengthen ties between our future generations.
Second, we have agreed to step up our security cooperation to ensure our people’s safety and peace in the region based on the now institutionalized Cooperation Framework.
First of all, to this end, we have consulted on practical ways to cooperate, aimed at improving our joint response capabilities to North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats, which have become sophisticated more than ever. The real-time sharing of DPRK missile warning data, which was agreed upon during the Phnom Penh summit last November, will be activated within this year. And this will make a significant progress in strengthening our three nations’ capabilities to detect and track North Korea’s missiles.
In countering the DPRK’s nuclear and missile threats, we concurred the trilateral defense exercises were crucial. As such, annual plans will be established for the ROK, U.S., Japan drills we committed to.
In the meantime, as North Korea funds its nuclear and missile programs by exploiting labor and human rights, efforts to monitor and stem such activities will be redoubled. To deter the DPRK’s illicit funding activities, a new trilateral working group on DPRK cyber activities will be established.
Moreover, Korea, the U.S., and Japan, in their pursuit of Indo-Pacific strategies, oppose any unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force.
Respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity, the peaceful settlement of disputes, among others, undergird a rules-based international order that we resolve to safeguard by intensifying our collaboration.
As part of such endeavors, our three nations agreed to support ASEAN and Pacific Island countries with their maritime security capacity-building efforts.
Furthermore, to help Ukrainians regain freedom and pursue reconstruction, we are determined to increase our three-way coordination.
Next, we, the three leaders, discussed how to work together to promote shared prosperity and future growth. First of all, in the field of economic security directly linked to our national economies of the three countries, we will work to expand our strategic partnership.
To ensure global supply chain resilience and energy security, we pledged to bolster our trilateral cooperation. To manage global supply chain risks, an early warning system will be established together.
In addition, we decided to broaden our collaboration in the field of cutting-edge technologies to secure future growth engines. Specifically, in AI, quantum, bio, and next-generation telecommunications and space sectors, cooperation among our three countries will deliver powerful synergies.
Korea, the U.S., and Japan committed to have their national laboratories expand joint R&D and personnel exchanges, providing a cornerstone for the three countries’ leadership in science and technology innovation.
Moreover, for the sake of shared prosperity in the Asia Pacific, in line with the needs of ASEAN and Pacific Island countries, effective support measures will be sought and implemented collectively.
Today, we, the three leaders, affirmed our commitment to the trilateral partnership towards a new era and possibilities thereof.
Grounded in the core values of freedom, human rights, and the rule of law, a strong alliance of values among Korea, the U.S., and Japan will help build a world that’s more peaceful and prosperous by serving as a sturdy foundation.
Mr. President, I thank you once again for your hospitality. Next time, I hope that we will be reunited in the Republic of Korea.
Thank you. (Applause.)
MODERATOR: Distinguished guests, the Prime Minister of Japan.
PRESIDENT BIDEN: President.
PRIME MINISTER KISHIDA: (As interpreted.) Thank you. First of all, in Maui, Hawaii, wildfires caused devastating damage. I express my sympathy, and I really pray for the peace of those who have lost their lives.
In order to offer support, a total of $2 million worth of support by our country has been decided. And the full — the relief for the affected people and for the earliest recovery of the affected areas, Japan will proactively do our contribution.
Today, I have visited Camp David, and the three of us have spent a truly meaningful time. I expressed my heartfelt gratitude to Joe for the kind invitation.
Together with Joe and President Yoon, this has been a precious opportunity for myself to further deepen the relationship of trust and confidence. For the first time ever, instead of in the sidelines of multilateral conferences, we have held the trilateral summit on a standalone basis.
Here at Camp David, numerous historical meetings have taken place. And it is a huge honor to have printed a fresh page in its history with this meeting.
The foundation of the trilateral collaboration are the solid, firm, bilateral relationships. The three of us have understood this more than anyone else and have executed our understanding in practice.
In January of this year, I visited the United States, and later, President Yoon visited Japan in March and then to the U.S. in April. And in May, I myself traveled to South Korea, and we have bolstered our mutual relationship.
At the moment, the free and open international order, based on the rule of law, is in crisis. Due to Russia’s aggression of Ukraine, the international order is shaken from its foundation. The unilateral attempt to change the status quo by force in the East and South China Seas are continuing. And the nuclear and missile threat of North Korea is only becoming ever larger.
Under such circumstances, to make our trilateral strategic collaboration blossom and bloom is only logical and almost inevitable and is required in this era.
The three of us here today declare our determination to pioneer the new era of Japan, U.S., ROK partnership.
How we will advance the cooperation of our three countries going forward, I will discuss from three perspectives.
Firstly, the coordination between the Japan-U.S. and the U.S.-ROK alliances will be reinforced, and trilateral security cooperation will be brought to a new height.
At this meeting, we agreed to hold the Japan-U.S.-ROK multidomain joint exercises on an annual basis. Furthermore, regarding the real-time sharing of North Korea’s missile warning information that we agreed last November, the initial steps have been implemented and an important first step has been advanced towards the launch of the mechanism by the end of the year.
We also agreed on the establishment of the working group on North Korea cyber activities, considered to be the source of finance for nuclear and missile development and on other matters.
The second point is the promotion of cooperation between the United States, Japan, and South Korea and the expansion of their areas of cooperation regarding the response to North Korea.
In addition to strengthening regional deterrence and response capabilities, the three countries agreed to strengthen cooperation for the full implementation of sanctions and to work closely together in the U.N. Security Council, where all three countries will be members in 2024.
At the same time, we shared our recognition that the way is open for dialogue with North Korea. I then stated that the abduction issue is a humanitarian issue with time constraints and once again received the strong support of Joe and President Yoon for the immediate resolution of this matter.
We also agreed to work together through the Indo-Pacific dialogue and the development cooperation to realize a free and open Indo-Pacific and, in particular, to coordinate capacity-building support in the domain of maritime security, particularly with regard to ASEAN and Pacific Island countries.
Furthermore, we agreed to promote cooperation in the field of economic security, including critical and emerging technologies and supply chain resilience.
Third, developing a framework for trilateral cooperation. This will create a foundation for continuous and stable enhancement of coordination among the three countries.
After confirming that the three countries will promote multi-layered cooperation at all levels, it was agreed that the trilateral summit meeting will be held at least once a year.
And likewise, the ministers of foreign affairs, defense, and national security advisors will each also meet at least once a year. And the financial minister, as well as the industry and commerce ministers, will be meeting.
We will consider the Camp David principles issued today at a historic turning point for the international community to be a new compass for trilateral cooperation, and we will vigorously implement the concrete cooperation outlined in the Camp David statement of Japan, ROK, and U.S. on our partnership.
Together with Joe and President Yoon, we will continue to work to further strengthen the strategic partnership between the three countries in order to safeguard a free and open international order based on the rule of law.
Thank you. (Applause.)
MS. JEAN-PIERRE: Thank you. Now we have time for questions. President Biden, please select your reporter first.
PRESIDENT BIDEN: Aamer, with the AP.
Q Thank you, Mr. President. I have a question for each of the leaders. They will be brief and — but related.
President Biden, first for you: How confident should Asia be about a robust American commitment to a nuclear umbrella when the Compa- — Commander-in-Chief who preceded you and is looking to succeed you spoke openly about reducing the U.S. footprint in the Korean Peninsula?
President Yoon, how much confidence can Japan and the U.S. have about Seoul’s long-term commitment to rapprochement when polls show the solid majority of Korea disapproves of your handling and mending of the forced labor issue?
And, Prime Minister Kishida, what assurances can you give to your country’s citizens who fear bolstering your security cooperation in this matter could lead to — the country into an economic cold war with China?
And if you’ll indulge me, Mr. President, on a domestic matter: What is your reaction to the Special Counsel appointment last week into your son?
PRESIDENT BIDEN: (Laughs.) Well, first of all, look, there’s not much, if anything, I agree on with my predecessor on foreign policy. His America First policy, walking away from the rest of the world, has made us weaker, not stronger.
America is strong with our allies and our alliances, and that’s why we will endure. And it’s a strength that — quite frankly, that increases all the — three of our strengths.
This is just about one summit. What makes today different is it actually launches a series of initiatives that are actually institutional changes in how we deal with one another — in security cooperation, economic cooperation, technology cooperation, development cooperation, consultation exercises. And all of this will create (inaudible) momentum, I believe, year by year, month by month, to make the relationship stronger and more certain to remain to be in place.
And with regard — on these esult- — results, I think you’re going to keep it going. And I think you’re going to benefit all our countries.
And with regard to the second question, I make — I have no comment on any investigation that’s going on. That’s up to the Justice Department, and that’s all I have to say.
PRESIDENT YOON: (As interpreted.) To the question that was directed to me, I would like to say that the treaty made between Korea and Japan that was made in 1965 and the following measures by the government and the Supreme Court’s ruling in 2015 have some differences. But we have already implemented measures to bridge the gaps among them.
And in South Korea, of course, there is public opinion that is opposed to the government’s measures like that. However, from a perspective that’s forward-looking, strengthening ties and improving relationships between Korea and Japan are important and there is a shared understanding that this matters to our bilateral relationship, as well as our future. And this is something we need to continue working on.
PRIME MINISTER KISHIDA: (As interpreted.) Thank you for the question. First of all, at today’s meeting, the rules-based international order and activities inconsistent to such rule-based international order and activities. Other concerns have been shared, and the rule-based, free and open international order must be defended. And going forward, the U.S., Japan, ROK strategic collaboration will be reinforced even further. Such endeavors will continue going forward.
Our country and for the surrounding countries, the response capabilities, as well as defense capabilities, will be bolstered. And by doing so, the lives and livelihood of our population will be protected and the sense of assurance must be raised. These are the important activities.
Having said that, with regard to China, last year, in November, there was the Japan-China Leaders Summit, and there was a positive momentum. By maintaining the positive momentum, what has to be asserted will be asserted. And we shall strongly request responsible conduct. And we will continue an accumulative conversation about multiple issues. We will cooperate with regard to common challenges. Such constructive and stable relationship will be established by mutual effort.
That is my administration’s consistent policy. Based on this perception towards regional stability, our efforts will continue.
MS. JEAN-PIERRE: President Yoon, next question, please.
PRESIDENT YOON: (As interpreted.) Please go ahead and ask a question. The reporter from Money Today — reporter named Jongjin Park. Please go ahead with your question.
Q (As interpreted.) Hi, I’m Jongjin Park of Money Today. First of all, I would like to ask a question to President Yoon Suk Yeol of the Republic of Korea. I heard that you said that a new chapter has opened in our trilateral cooperation with the two countries. Compared to the previous summits, what would be the most significant outcome that you gained through this summit?
And also, from the perspective of our people, what would be the benefit that the people of Korea would feel from these strengthening of ties?
And now my question goes to President Biden. During this summit, the issues of detainees or prisoners of wars — and you mentioned that there will be further cooperation in these human rights issues. And you also said you will support the free and peaceful Korean Peninsula in the region. And what kind of shift would there be in your policy? And what kind of specific solutions do you have in this regard?
Lastly, I would like to direct my question to Prime Minister Kishida. Today, we had a historic trilateral summit. However, there was much backlash and many concerns in Korea. However, President Yoon showed his political courage to do so. That’s the international community’s evaluation.
However, there are still concerns that Japan is making very passive efforts to resolve our issues that still remain. And also, how would you be able to show your truthful willingness to resolve and improve our bilateral relations going forward?
PRESIDENT YOON: (As interpreted.) First of all, this trilateral cooperation amongst our three countries has opened a new chapter, and we made that announcement today to talk about the differences from the past cooperation.
For instance, in the past, it was about individual issues that we sought cooperation among ourselves. But now, as we have opened a new chapter in our cooperation for security, economy, science and technology, and development cooperation for the Global South, health, and women — across all of these issues, our three countries decided to closely work together. So it’s much more comprehensive in nature.
Such comprehensive cooperation has been launched by us today because currently we face complicated crisis and the threat from the DPRK. And across the world, we believe that we can together make a contribution to freedom and peace around the world.
So that is our foundational understanding and our common and shared interests of the three countries. And not just for exclusionary interests of ourselves. Our interests are well aligned with the universal interests of the members of the global community. That’s where we find our shared interests lie.
And at the same time, this framework of comprehensive cooperation among our three countries will contribute to global supply chain resilience, global financial market stability, cooperation in the frontier technology sectors and science.
Our three countries together have the best-in-class expertise in science and technology. And we are the ones who are implementing liberal democracies.
Naturally, progress in science and technologies will bring benefits — tangible benefits to our people, not just in terms of security, but also in terms of economy and science and technology.
But what is most important here is not about our own interests only. When we put our forces together, I believe that we can make a contribution to the advancement of freedom and peace in the world. And that’s exactly where our interests are aligned.
PRESIDENT BIDEN: I — look, back in May of 2022, I met with the families of the Japanese abductees during my visit, heard their stories, and empathized with them and got a sense of the pain they’re feeling. It’s real.
We know there are many families out there who still wait and worry and wonder. We’re not going to forget about them or their loved ones.
And there’s clear language on this on our joint statement. The bottom line is this: that we share a common position. We’re committed to working together to see the return of all prisoners of war and — and those who’ve been abducted and detained.
And by the way, one of the things we get asked many times — and it wasn’t directly asked, but implied — is what makes us think any of this is positive.
Success brings success. When other nations see cooperation in the region, they make judgments about: Would they be better off if they made commitments? Will they move?
Think about — as students of history, all of you — and you are — think about how many times successes have generated other successes when you don’t anticipate it.
And so, I — I just think this is a — we’re not going to forget, we’re not giving up, and we’re going to continue to make the case for the freedom of all of those detainees.
PRIME MINISTER KISHIDA: (As interpreted.) With regard to your question for me, first of all, I have strong feelings about strengthening bilateral relationships between the ROK and Japan. I share that with President Yoon. The two countries, in dealing with international challenges, should cooperate. We’re both important neighboring countries. And so, friendship with President Yoon and a relationship of trust, based on this, both countries as partners should open up a new era. And that is my thinking.
This year, President Yoon came to Japan, and I visited the ROK. At international fora, we have repeated meetings — we have had repeated meetings. And between our two countries, including the economy and security, we’ve had forward-looking and concrete approaches which were started. It’s already in motion, dynamically.
Economic security dialogue was started — or it has been decided on. In the area of export control, there have been progress. And also financial ministers and defense ministers have had meetings.
And so, we’ve had this very positive, forward-looking developments. And these are seen not only in the public sector. Also in the private sector, we see a slate of developments, human exchanges, and exchanges between business circles. We’re seeing very active developments in all of these areas, and that is a reality.
Going forward, we hope to accumulate these approaches along with President Yoon to strengthen our bilateral relations even further. By generating results, we hope that people will understand Japan’s feelings towards our bilateral relations. And we’d like to continue such efforts.
Thank you very much. Then, let me see. From Kyodo — Tajiri-san, Kyodo News.
Q (As interpreted.) Tajiri, Kyodo News. At Camp David with history. I do have a question to each of the leaders.
President Biden, it was mentioned at this summit meeting that Russia’s aggression of Ukraine is continuing. So, what role do you expect of Japan?
Prime Minister Kishida has mentioned that as China’s threat in Asia is rising, Ukraine may be East Asia tomorrow. What do you think about this comment, President Biden?
And the situation in Asia, where China’s threat is rising — what is the meaning and significance of the trilateral relationship with Japan, U.S., ROK becoming stronger in multiple layers?
President Yoon Suk Yeol, I have a question to Your Excellency. North Korea’s nuclear missile development is a major security threat to Japan, South Korea, and the U.S. As North Korea’s provocations continue to escalate, what is the meaning and significance of the three countries declaring a new era of partnership?
Regarding the release of treated water at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, did Prime Minister Kishida explain the matter at the trilateral or the bilateral summit today?
To the recent Japan-ROK summit meeting, Your Excellency, you expressed your intent to respect the IAEA report despite the strong domestic opposition. Why do you demonstrate your understanding for the policy of Kishida administration? I ask for that reason.
And to Prime Minister Kishida, this is the first time that a trilateral summit is held on a standalone basis rather than on the sidelines of international meetings. You have said that the trilateral cooperation will be raised to new heights for the security environment in East Asia. And without the resolution of abduction, North Korea is continuing nuclear missile development. What is the meaning for North Korea?
And in eastern South China Seas, by maritime advancement, China is continuing unilateral attempts to change the status quo. What is the meaning for China?
PRESIDENT BIDEN: And you have a great imagination. One question ends up being six. But, thank you. I’ll try to answer all of it. (Laughter.) I’m glad I didn’t have you as my law professor when he said “one question.” (Laughs.) At any rate, they’re all legitimate questions.
Look, on Ukraine, I and my country and the leadership of my country in both parties are very grateful for everything Japan is helping to deal with in Ukraine. And I mean that sincerely. You’ve showed strong leadership through the G7 as well and contributed to a significant amount of financial and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, as well as nonlethal military equipment.
And, you know — and they joined so many other nations in holding Russia accountable through their international sanctions.
If my memory serves me well — and I think it does, Mr. Prime Minister — we found ourselves in a circumstance where, when I called you about Ukraine, I didn’t have to convince you of anything. I started off to make the case that Ukraine was a circumstance where — to think, in the first quarter of the 20th century, another country would amass over 150,000 forces on the border of another country — or 150,000 forces and invade that country — invade that country without any rationale other than — if you read Putin’s speech after he invaded, he talked about Kyiv being the motherland. You know, I mean, it just was ridiculous, I think. And he talked about being Peter the Great. It was —
Just imagine if we had done nothing. Imagine if we had done nothing.
And the point was immediately recognized, if I’m not mistaken, by you, Mr. Prime Minister, that we’re
in a situation where it could happen anywhere. If we stand — if we had stood still, what signal would that send to China about Taiwan? What signal would that send around the world if nations weren’t powerful on borders?
But here’s the deal. You contributed significantly to what, I think, is already the —
Let me put it this way. Russia has already lost. It cannot meet its original objective which it stated. It’s not possible.
But — and they’ve joined so many other nations in holding Russia accountable for international sanctions. But Japan’s leadership, from day one, it has been critical for making it clear that the consequences for war extend well beyond Europe — well beyond Europe.
I say it in reverse. What would happen if an Asian country with 150,000 troops invaded another? You think that would not affect the interests, the economy, and — and the foreign policy of nations in Europe and Latin America all across the world? It would have profound impact.
And with Japan’s leadership, from day one, it has been critical to making clear the consequences of this will extend well beyond Europe — well beyond Europe. It’s a global issue that has impacts everywhere. And the Prime Minister’s comments at Shangri La capture that.
And by the way, you know, we talked about this being an inflection point. The world is changing. The world is changing. And about every six or seven generations, it makes significant change. And there’s a lot happening.
And the idea that we’re going to sit down, the rest of the world, and say, “Well, that’s only a European problem.” There hasn’t been that kind of invasion since World War Two.
And so — as for peace, we all want that, of course. Ukrainians want it most of all. And my team has been working very closely with the — President Zelenskyy’s team and further peace formula, noting that “nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine.”
But nonetheless, we’re meeting with them constantly — constantly.
And your other two questions about China — I’ll just say this: This summit was not about China. That was not the purpose of the meeting. But it did come — China obviously came up. Not to say we don’t share concerns about the economic coercion or heightened tensions caused by China, but this summit was really about our relationship with each other and deepening cooperation across an entire range of issues that went well beyond just the immediate issues we raised.
It was about more peaceful and prosperous Indo-Pacific — a region, quite frankly, that would benefit everyone living there and around the world if we get it right. It’s not just here. It has a phenomenal impact.
Think about what’s — at any rate, I won’t get going. I’ll take too long.
But as you’ve seen from the initiatives we’re announcing here, today is just how committed we are to see this vision take place. And I think this relationship that we put together and I think we’re going to — you’re going to see it expand. It’s not merely what we did today. This is a historic meeting.
But we’re about to — we’ve laid in place a long-term structure for a relationship that will last and have a phenomenal impact not just in Asia, but around the world.
Someone once said in a different context that — about a health- — a healthcare provision in my country a while ago: This is a big deal. This is a big deal.
Q President Biden, how soon do you anticipate meeting with President Xi —
PRESIDENT BIDEN: They have to answer their questions.
PRESIDENT YOON: (As interpreted.) Yes, let me address the questions directed to me.
First, as to North Korea’s nuclear and missile provocations and the threats that are posed and how we plan to counter those threats together among our three countries, let me address that question.
Of the cooperative frameworks among our three countries is the most — what is most symbolic out of those is our cooperation in defense area. Any provocations or attacks against any one of our three countries will trigger a decision-making process of this trilateral framework, and our solidarity will become even stronger and harder.
And at the same time, missile information will be shared in a real-time basis, and systematic training and drills will be implemented in accordance with systematic annual schedules, regular schedules, and regular trainings that we plan to carry out together against the DPRK’s missile provocations. That will be our response.
And at the same time, regarding your question concerning the water release from the Fukushima plant, as a matter of fact, that issue was not addressed during our summit because it was not on the agenda.
But still, let me try to address that question. The Fukushima plant’s treated water, if it’s going to have some type of impact, it would flow through the entire Pacific Ocean having an impact not just on our three countries, but all countries around the world.
As such, for the sake of safety and health of the people of our three countries and all members of the international community, that should be something that we need to place the highest priority on.
Regarding this treated water, based on scientific principles, all of the processing should be carried out accordingly. And at the same time, internationally recognized and reliable IAEA’s investigation results are something that we can trust.
And I would like to make sure that everything is conducted and carried out in accordance with the procedures established by the IAEA. Together with the international community and also together with the Koreans, transparent data disclosure would be necessary, in my opinion.
PRIME MINISTER KISHIDA: (As interpreted.) Thank you. The question to myself. As you mentioned, nuclear and missile development by North Korea or unilateral attempts to change the status quo in the East and South China Seas are ongoing. And the security environment surrounding our three countries, it has becoming increasingly harsh day after day.
Under this backdrop, on this occasion, we agreed to enhance the coordination between the U.S.-Japan and the U.S.-ROK alliances and to bring the trilateral security cooperation to new heights.
This is indeed the requirement of this era. And by this summit, I am sure that the trilateral security cooperation will further advance and reinforce the regional peace and stability.
In particular, with regard to North Korea, we were able to put forward concrete results, such as the implementation of annual Japan, U.S, ROK multidomain and joint exercises and the establishment of a working group to address North Korea’s cyber activities.
I also stated that the abduction issue is a humanitarian issue with time constraints. And Joe and President Yoon reiterated their strong support for the immediate resolution of this matter.
We also shared our recognition that the path to dialogue with North Korea is open.
Furthermore, once again, the presidents of both countries aligned with me in strongly opposing unilateral changes to the status quo through the use of force.
We will continue our efforts to further strengthen the strategic partnership among the three countries in order to defend the free, open, and international order based on the rule of law.
That is all. Thank you.
MS. JEAN-PIERRE: This concludes —
PRESIDENT BIDEN: To answer your question, I expect and hope to follow up on our conversation on Bali this fall. That’s my expectation. Thank you.
MS. JEAN-PIERRE: This concludes our press conference. Please — please stay seated as the — the leaders depart, please. Please stay seated.
Q Mr. President, are you winning the competition with China?
PRESIDENT BIDEN: We’re winning all the competition.
4:08 P.M. EDT
Official news published at https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/speeches-remarks/2023/08/18/remarks-by-president-biden-president-yoon-suk-yeol-of-the-republic-of-korea-and-prime-minister-kishida-fumio-of-japan-in-joint-press-conference-camp-david-md/