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Biden, Kishida affirm importance of cross-strait peace during summit

2024-04-12
Focus Taiwan
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United States President Joe Biden (right) and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. CNA photo April 10, 2024
United States President Joe Biden (right) and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. CNA photo April 10, 2024

Washington, April 10 (CNA) United States President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida discussed the importance of maintaining peace across the Taiwan Strait, during their meeting in Washington on Wednesday.

At a press conference after the meeting, Biden thanked Kishida for standing "shoulder to shoulder" with the U.S. on a number of issues, as the decades-long alliance between the two countries continues to grow.

The president commended Kishida for "standing strong with the United States as we stand up for freedom of navigation, including in the South China Sea, and as we maintain peace and stability across the Taiwan Straits; and taking the brave step of mending ties with the Republic of Korea so we can all stand shoulder to shoulder together."

On Kishida's part, he said via an interpreter that he and Biden had underscored the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and confirmed their position to encourage peaceful resolution of the cross-strait issue.

In a joint statement issued after their meeting, Biden and Kishida expressed a common stance on Taiwan.

"We emphasize that our basic positions on Taiwan remain unchanged and reiterate the importance of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait as an indispensable element of global security and prosperity. We encourage the peaceful resolution of cross-Strait issues."

Meanwhile, in a fact sheet about the Japanese prime minister's official visit to the U.S. and a state dinner hosted by Biden, the White House noted that both countries will "collaborate with like-minded partners to build trusted and more resilient networks and intend to contribute funds to provide subsea cables in the Pacific region, including US$16 million towards subsea cable systems for Tuvalu."

This "will connect it for the first time in history, as well as the Federated States of Micronesia," the White House fact sheet said.

"In addition, Taiwan also plans to provide funding to deliver connectivity to Tuvalu," it added. Tuvalu is one of Taiwan's 12 diplomatic allies worldwide.

Commenting on the statements made by the two leaders after their meeting, Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) expressed appreciation to President Biden and Prime Minister Kishida for again publicly declaring their countries' support for peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.

As China continues to step up its military provocations and gray-zone tactics against Taiwan, the joint statement after the summit again shows that the international community agrees on the importance of cross-strait peace, MOFA said.

Taiwan welcomes the international community's continued concern for peace and security across the Taiwan Strait and will continue to play its part as a responsible member of the global community, working closely with like-minded partners like the U.S. and Japan to promote regional peace, stability and prosperity, MOFA said.

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