| 7 October 2022, Friday |

Australia to host ‘Quad’ meeting of foreign ministers

According to the Australian government, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is scheduled to visit Australia in February to meet with colleagues from Japan, India, and Australia to discuss Indo-Pacific coordination.

The two-day Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) gathering of foreign ministers comes amid the Biden administration’s concerns about China, as tensions between Europe and Russia over Ukraine escalate.

China has previously characterized the Quad as a Cold War-era creation and a clique “against other countries.”

Marise Payne, Australia’s Foreign Minister, did not identify a date for the meeting, but said in a statement that she looked forward to welcome the Quad foreign ministers to Australia in the coming weeks.

“We are a key network of liberal democracies working together to provide strategic options for our area, with a focus on practical initiatives to strengthen the resilience and sovereignty of all governments,” Payne added.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s administration is strengthening Australia’s ties in the area despite “strategic rivalry, challenges to the liberal international order, and rising uncertainty,” she added.

Because of pandemic limitations on international travel, Japanese media originally stated that the Quad conference may be held digitally. On January 27, Indian Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar tweeted that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

Officials in Canberra believe that the February summit would allow Jaishankar to recuperate and return a negative test.

Yoshimasa Hayashi, Japan’s Foreign Minister, is also anticipated to attend.

The Quad grouping has previously addressed increasing the region’s supply of COVID-19 vaccinations, supply chains for semiconductors, and technological collaboration. It has also participated in combined naval drills.

  • Reuters