Ambassador Keshap Discusses the Indo-Pacific Strategy and U.S. Priorities for the East Asia Summit

REMARKS
AMBASSADOR ATUL KESHAP, PRINCIPAL DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY
BUREAU OF EAST ASIAN AND PACIFIC AFFAIRS
CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES ASIAN ARCHITECTURE CONFERENCE 2020
VIRTUAL
NOVEMBER 10, 2020

As Prepared
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This week the Secretary welcomed to Washington ROK Foreign Minister Kang for important discussions between allies.
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And importantly Deputy Secretary of State Biegun has had regular calls with key Indo-Pacific counterparts on our fight against COVID and planning for the region’s economic recovery.

So as we carry on our bilateral efforts to ensure the security and economic prosperity of the region, we recognize the importance of fora like the EAS, with ASEAN at its center.

At this year’s EAS, we will again describe our bold vision for the Indo-Pacific that the President outlined in Vietnam in 2017. We’ll focus on what we have achieved so far and what we want to achieve going forward.

Our Indo-Pacific vision aligns with the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific and with the priorities of our allies and partners.

It is based on principles that underpin peace and security, including transparency, fair and reciprocal trade, adherence to international law, energy security, and a commitment to ASEAN centrality.

The vision is necessarily a long-term one, but the United States is always prepared to respond to the region’s immediate needs. This year and in the coming year, those immediate needs center on responding to and recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Democratic People’s Republic of Korea
Finally, on the DPRK, we will explain that we remain open to diplomatic negotiations with North Korea to eliminate the threat to international peace and security posed by the DPRK’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs. Our goal is to achieve complete denuclearization of the DPRK, as committed to by Chairman Kim when we met in Singapore.

We will call on EAS members’ cooperation, to fully implement obligations under UN Security Council resolutions sending a strong, unified message that North Korea must halt provocations, abide by its obligations under UNSCRs, and engage in sustained and substantive negotiations with the United States. [Full Text]