TOKYO, May 24 (KUNA) -- Leaders of Japan, the US, Australia and India discussed, Tuesday, responses to "Russia's invasion of Ukraine," and reiterated their strong resolve to maintain peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region, as per joint statement.
Attending the summit of the group of four countries, known as the Quad, was Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, US President Joe Biden, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Tokyo.
The leaders underscored unequivocally that the centerpiece of international order is international law, including the UN Charter, respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity of all states.
The Quad will champion adherence to international law and the maintenance of freedom of navigation and overflight, to meet challenges to the maritime rules-based order, including in the East and South China Seas, the document said.
"We strongly oppose 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," it said.
At the beginning of the Quad summit, Kishida criticized Russia over the situation in Ukraine and strongly maintained that the same thing should not happen in the Indo-Pacific region, adding that recent events have underlined the importance of international cooperation to maintain peace and stability.
The United States President, Joe Biden, also condemned "Russia's invasion of Ukraine" in his opening remarks, saying, "The US strategy was for a free, open, connected, secure and resilient Indo-Pacific, Russia's assault on Ukraine only heightens the importance of those goals - the fundamental principles of the international order."
"We have a lot of work to do keeping this region peaceful and stable; tackling this pandemic and the next one; and addressing the climate crisis, ensuring that technologies of the future are governed according to our values," the president noted.
In addition, the four leaders reaffirmed their shared commitment to deepen cooperation on infrastructure, which is critical to driving productivity and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region, adding that the Quad will seek to extend more than USD 50 billion of infrastructure assistance and investment in the region over the next five years.
Quad leaders also condemned North Korea's destabilizing ballistic missile development and launches, including multiple intercontinental ballistic missile tests and called on the international community to fully implement these resolutions.
It was the second Japan-US-Australia-India in-person summit. The first face-to-face Quad summit was held last September in Washington (end)