Japan, U.S., Australia, India Affirm Indo-Pacific Cooperation


Tokyo, Oct. 6 (Jiji Press)--The foreign ministers of Japan, the United States, Australia and India on Tuesday agreed on a policy of seeking broad-based cooperation with other countries that share the same values, such as free trade and the rule of law, in order to realize the free and open Indo-Pacific vision.

The four ministers reached the accord at a meeting in Tokyo. They also agreed that foreign ministers of the four countries will hold talks once a year.

Touching on the worldwide spread of the novel coronavirus, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that "the crisis was made infinitely worse" by the Communist Party of China's "cover-up" of the situation in the country.

"America stands with each of you as we work to achieve victory over this horrible pandemic and rebuild our economies together," he said. Pompeo also said that "it is more critical now than ever that we collaborate to protect our people and partners" from the Chinese party's "exploitation, corruption and coercion," noting that "we've seen it" in such regions as the South China Sea, the East China Sea and the Taiwan Strait.

With China in mind, Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi said that international order has been facing challenges in various fields in recent years. The pandemic has further incited such moves, he warned.

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