All national dailies reported extensively on the meeting in Tokyo on Tuesday of the leaders of the United States, Japan, Australia, and India, during which they agreed to provide over $50 billion in infrastructure aid and investment in the Indo-Pacific over the next five years. The Quad leaders released a joint statement following the two-hour meeting. Concerning the situation in Ukraine, the leaders agreed that all countries must seek peaceful resolution of disputes in accordance with international law. The papers quoted President Biden as telling the other Quad members that the United States must and will be a strong, steady, and enduring partner in the Indo-Pacific.
Prime Minister Kishida held a news conference after the meeting during which he said changes to the status quo by force must never be allowed anywhere in the world, especially in the Indo-Pacific, and that the Quad will make efforts to achieve a free and open Indo-Pacific. Concerning China, the joint statement said that in order to meet challenges to the maritime rules-based order in the East and South China Seas, the Quad strongly opposes any coercive, provocative, or unilateral actions that seek to change the status quo and increase tensions in the area, such as the militarization of disputed features, the dangerous use of coast guard vessels and maritime militia, and efforts to disrupt other countries’ offshore resource exploitation activities.
The papers pointed out that the joint statement did not mention Russia or China by name, apparently out of consideration for India’s position on these two nations. Prime Minister Kishida said at the news conference that it is natural for differences to remain over some issues even among like-minded nations. Asahi and Mainichi wrote that although there were differences with India over how to respond to Russia, the United States and Japan promoted the Quad members’ cooperation in countering China and demonstrated the group’s unity to the international community. Quoting Kishida as telling reporters that “with the participation of India,” the Quad expressed concern over the tragic war in Ukraine and affirmed that the rule of law and the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity must be protected everywhere in the world, Mainichi wrote that Kishida stressed that the United States, Japan, and Australia shared common views with India, which has traditionally close ties with Russia. The paper wrote that Indian Prime Minister Modi is giving consideration to the United States and Europe out of concern that it may become isolated in the international community due to its position on Russia, pointing out that he also joined President Biden and Prime Minister Kishida at the launch of the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework in Tokyo on Monday.
Yomiuri wrote that the Quad summit demonstrated the group’s solidarity by securing India’s participation in the Western camp at a time when the international order is being shaken due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and in view of China’s hegemonic activities. Nikkei wrote that given the differences between India and the other members, attention will be focused on how the four Quad nations unite and align over pressing security issues. The paper added that although Japan proposed mentioning the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait in the joint statement, it was not included.