The White House
May 23, 2022

Japan-U.S. Joint Leaders’ Statement: Strengthening the Free and Open International Order

Today, Japan and the United States affirm a partnership that is stronger and deeper than at any time in its history….

…President Biden commended Prime Minister Kishida’s global leadership, including in the Japan-Australia-India-U.S. (Quad) Summit meeting.

As global partners, Japan and the United States affirm that the rules- based international order is indivisible….Prime Minister Kishida and President Biden shared the view that the greatest immediate challenge to this order is Russia’s brutal, unprovoked, and unjustified aggression against Ukraine. The two leaders condemned Russia’s actions, and called for Russia to be held accountable for its atrocities. They reaffirmed their support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The Prime Minister and the President underscored the importance of the international community’s unity, and expressed solidarity….

…Both commended the unprecedented global unity demonstrated by U.N. Member States in condemning Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and suspending it from the U.N. Human Rights Council….

President Biden reiterated support for Japan’s permanent membership on a reformed Security Council….

Notwithstanding the ongoing crisis in Europe, the two leaders reaffirmed that the Indo-Pacific is a region of vital importance…and one that faces mounting strategic challenges to the rules-based international order….

Prime Minister Kishida and President Biden called on China to stand with the international community and unequivocally condemn Russia’s actions in Ukraine. They discussed continuing actions by China that are inconsistent with the international rules-based order….

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Kyodo News
May 23, 2022

Kishida, Biden to boost alliance as Ukraine war fans China worries

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. President Joe Biden agreed Monday to boost the strength and deterrence of their nations’ alliance amid growing concern that Russia’s war in Ukraine could embolden China to take further assertive behaviors over Taiwan and other potential flashpoints in the Indo-Pacific region.

Following their first in-person, sit-down meeting in Tokyo, Kishida said at a joint press conference the two leaders “reaffirmed that any attempt to change the status quo by force is absolutely impermissible, regardless of the location,” and that they oppose such attempts in the East China Sea, including the Japanese-controlled Senkaku [Diaoyu] Islands, and the disputed South China Sea.

The two also underlined the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait…Biden said the United States will get involved militarily in the event of a contingency over Taiwan, noting, “That’s the commitment we made.”

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In a joint statement issued after the summit, Kishida and Biden urged China to “stand with the international community and unequivocally condemn Russia’s actions in Ukraine.”

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“As the regional security environment becomes increasingly severe, I reaffirmed with President Biden that we need to speedily strengthen the deterrence and response of the Japan-U.S. alliance,” Kishida said, adding that he conveyed his determination to “fundamentally strengthen” Japan’s defense capabilities.

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Biden underscored the U.S. commitment to the defense of Japan, “backed by the full range of capabilities, including nuclear,” and the two leaders “affirmed the critical importance of ensuring that U.S. extended deterrence remains credible and resilient,” according the statement.

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The ruling Liberal Democratic Party has asked Kishida to consider doubling Japan’s defense budget to 2 percent or more of its gross domestic product [NATO requirement] and called for the development by the Self-Defense Forces of counterstrike abilities aimed at disabling enemy weapons and missile infrastructure.

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Nikkei Asia
May 23, 2022

Biden says he would use force to defend Taiwan

U.S. President Joe Biden signaled Monday that the U.S. would use its military to defend Taiwan if China were to attempt to take the island by force.

In a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida after their meeting in Tokyo, the president was asked if he was willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan, despite not taking such a position in Ukraine.

“Yes,” Biden replied, adding that “it’s a commitment we made.”

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He also said China does not have the “jurisdiction to go in and use force to take over Taiwan.”

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In addition to strengthening its self-defense capabilities, Taiwan will also “deepen cooperation with the US, Japan and other like-minded countries to jointly defend the security of the Taiwan Strait and the rules-based international order….”

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The leaders also “renewed their commitment to strengthening the deterrence and response capabilities” of the U.S.-Japan alliance.” In this context, Kishida told Biden that Japan would boost its defense capability.

Biden [said] “The United States remains fully committed to Japan’s defense…,” he said. “I applaud Prime Minister Kishida’s determination to strengthen Japanese defense capabilities as well as [a] strong Japan and a strong U.S.-Japan alliance….”

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Kishida revealed that the two leaders also agreed on the need for reform and enhancement of the United Nations including the Security Council, and that he earned Biden’s support for Japan becoming a permanent member of a reformed Council.

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Biden was accompanied by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, U.S Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel and national security adviser Jake Sullivan, along with another half dozen bureaucrats handling East Asian affairs.

Biden began the day with an audience with Emperor Naruhito at the Imperial Palace. The president “called on His Majesty the Emperor Naruhito today to offer greetings on behalf of the American people, highlighting the strength of the U.S.-Japan relationship anchored by deep people-to-people ties,” the White House said in a statement.

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