Domestic Affairs

Biden says U.S., Japan, S. Korea will bring military cooperation to ‘unprecedented’ levels

U.S. President Joe Biden said he and his South Korean and Japanese counterparts made history Friday, bringing their countries’ trilateral military cooperation to “unprecedented levels.”Biden said the three countries will also bolster their efforts to …

U.S. President Joe Biden said he and his South Korean and Japanese counterparts made history Friday, bringing their countries' trilateral military cooperation to "unprecedented levels."

Biden said the three countries will also bolster their efforts to counter North Korea's cyber crimes.

"We are elevating our trilateral defense collaboration," the U.S. leader told a joint press conference with South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

He added the move will include conducting "annual multi-domain military exercises, bring our trilateral defense cooperation to unprecedented levels."

The agreement came during a historic three-way summit held at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland.

"Today, we made history: The first ever standalone summit between the leaders of our three countries, as well as our commitment to meet together on a leader level, annually," Biden told the joint press conference, adding the leaders have also agreed to have their Cabinet members meet regularly "from this point on, not just this year, not next year (but) forever."

Biden noted the leaders have committed to consult "swiftly" with each other in response to threats to any of the three countries from any source, especially from North Korea.

"We are doubling down on information sharing, including on the DPRK's missile launches and cyber activities, strengthening our ballistic missile defense cooperation," he said, referring to North Korea by its official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

"We are going to continue to counter threats from the DPRK, including cryptocurrency money laundering ... potential arms transfer in support of Russia's brutal war against Ukraine," said Biden.

"And today, we reaffirmed our shared commitment to maintain peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait and addressing economic coercion," he added.

The three countries have also agreed to bolster their trilateral cooperation in other areas, including supply chains, infrastructure, health and technology.

For instance, the countries have agreed to launch a "supply chain early warning system" that will alert them of potential disruptions of certain products and materials such as critical mineral or batteries, according to Biden.

They will also deepen their cooperation between their development finance institutions to "mobilize more financing for quality infrastructure and secure communications technology."

"This is not about a day a week or month. This is about decades and decades of relationships that we are building," Biden said of the trilateral summit.

Biden also expressed gratitude to South Korea and Japan for their ongoing help with massive wildfires in Hawaii, calling them "capable and indispensable allies."

Source: Yonhap News Agency