Sunday, May 28, 2023

Secretary Antony J. Blinken And Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida Before Their Meeting

PRIME MINISTER KISHIDA:  (Via interpreter) Well, Secretary Blinken, first of all, allow me to welcome you back to Japan.


PRIME MINISTER KISHIDA:  (Via interpreter) With the solidarity of the G7 becoming more important than ever, I have agreed that very rich and meaningful discussions were held at the G7 Foreign Ministers Meeting on critical topics, including the regional situations, including in Ukraine and the Indo-Pacific region, as well as engagement with the Global South.

And I want to pay my gratitude to you, Mr. Secretary, for your contribution to the discussion in the foreign ministers meeting.  And I hope that – I look forward to working even more closely with the United States to maintain an international order based on the rule of law.

SECRETARY BLINKEN:  Well, Prime Minister, thank you so much for receiving us today.  The United States could not ask for a better partner than Japan.  And we really applaud your leadership of the G7.  It is clearly the critical steering committee for the leading democratic economies.  Japan has established a very important agenda for the G7.  We look forward, President Biden looks forward to pursuing that at the leaders meeting next month in Hiroshima.

And to your point, Prime Minister, I think we spent about two-thirds of our time on issues of concern to the Global South, and indeed to our own citizens: climate change, energy security, health security, inclusive economic growth.  All of these issues were front and center in the agenda that Japan has put forward.  And of course we focused as well on the ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine.

And finally, and fittingly, we spent our last session focused on the arms control and nonproliferation agenda.  And in all of these, we are grateful for Japan’s leadership, and again, the President very much looks forward to being in Japan with you next month.

Thank you.

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