Biden arrives in Japan for summit, Quad meeting

Japan Today -- May 22
U.S. President Joe Biden arrived in Japan Sunday, his first trip to the Asian country since taking office, hoping to bolster the bilateral alliance amid China's assertiveness and reaffirm cooperation over Russia's war in Ukraine.

A series of meetings are scheduled during his three-day visit to Japan, which follows his trip to South Korea, including the summit of the Quad group that involves Japan, Australia and India. The president is also likely to have time to take in some traditional aspects of Japanese culture.

Biden's last visit to Japan was in 2013 as then U.S. President Barack Obama's vice president. First lady Jill Biden, who traveled to Japan last summer to attend the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics, did not accompany her husband.

On Monday, Biden will meet Emperor Naruhito at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo before heading to what will be his first in-person, sit-down bilateral summit with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the State Guest House.

Biden will launch on the same day his administration's first major economic initiative in the Indo-Pacific that is aimed at beefing up collaboration on issues ranging from supply chains and standards for a digital economy to infrastructure.

He will also meet with the families of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea in the 1970s and 1980s. The families have hoped for U.S. support to help resolve the issue, as aging relatives may have little time left.

Later Monday, Biden will attend a dinner hosted by Kishida at Happoen in Tokyo, known for its Japanese-style garden featuring teahouses, a pond and bonsai trees.

The two leaders may take a stroll in the garden, while Japan's first lady, Yuko Kishida, is expected to do a demonstration of traditional tea-serving for Biden, according to Japanese government sources. ...continue reading