Biden dispatching Sullivan to Tokyo for talks with Japan, Philippines, South Korea officials

Jun 13, 2023, 5:29 PM | Updated: 6:56 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is dispatching White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan to Tokyo this week for talks with his counterparts from Japan, Philippines and South Korea.

Sullivan will also take part in “the first-ever trilateral meeting of the Japanese, Philippine, and U.S. national security advisers” while in Japan, the White House National Security Council said in a statement Tuesday.

The White House offered scant details about Sullivan’s two-day visit that begins Thursday, saying Sullivan and his counterparts “will discuss ways to deepen collaboration on a number of key regional and global issues.”

Sullivan’s visit comes after U.S., Japanese and Philippine coast guard ships staged law enforcement drills in waters near the disputed South China Sea earlier this month. Washington has stepped up efforts to reinforce alliances in Asia amid an increasingly tense rivalry with China.

Washington lays no claims to the strategic South China Sea, where China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysian, Taiwan and Brunei have been locked in tense territorial stand-offs for decades. But the U.S. says freedom of navigation and overflight and the peaceful resolution of disputes in the busy waterway are in its national interest.

The White House confirmed Sullivan’s travels after Biden during a reception at the White House for U.S. chiefs of diplomatic missions on Tuesday made an off-hand remark that Ambassador Rahm Emanuel, the U.S. envoy to Japan, was not on hand because he was getting ready for Sullivan’s visit.

U.S.-China relations have been strained throughout Biden’s tenure. China launched military exercises last year around Taiwan after then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., visited the democratically governed island that China claims as its own.

Relations became further strained early this year after the U.S. shot down a Chinese spy balloon that had crossed the United States. Beijing also was angered by Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen’s stopover in the U.S. in April that included an engagement with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.

And on Saturday, the White House confirmed that China has been operating a spy base in Cuba for sometime and that it was upgraded in 2019 under the Trump administration’s watch.

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby on Monday said that the Trump administration had the “same access” to intelligence about China’s spying operations as the Biden administration did.

Former Trump administration officials, including former Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe and national security adviser John Bolton, have pushed back against the assertion that the Cuba spy base was upgraded under their watch.

“The (Biden) administration claims that the base was there in 2019 if not before, all I can say is I was in the White House for part of 2019 I was certainly unaware of it,” former Trump-era national security adviser John Bolton said in an interview on Tuesday with SiriusXM’s POTUS channel. “I think I would have remembered it if it crossed my desk.”

The White House confirmed the base after the Wall Street Journal reported last week that China and Cuba had reached an agreement in principle to build an electronic eavesdropping station on the island.

Despite the tensions with Beijing, the administration has been eager to restart high-level communications with Beijing.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken is after the spy balloon incident.

Sullivan is currently in India meeting with officials ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s state visit to Washington next week.

He held talks on Tuesday with his Indian counterpart, Ajit Doval, that focused on potential U.S.-Indian collaboration on artificial intelligence, semiconductors and defense, according to the Indian Foreign Ministry. Sullivan also addressed a conference of business leaders where he said the U.S. was keen on doing away with regulatory obstacles that are holding back the two countries from deepening trade in areas like defense and high-tech.


Associated Press writer Krutika Pathi in New Delhi contributed to this report.

United States News

Donald Trump speaks to the media as he arrives to court during his trial for allegedly covering up ...

Associated Press

Trump prosecutor focuses on ‘cover-up’ in closing arguments while defense attacks key witness

Donald Trump engaged in “a conspiracy and a cover-up,” a prosecutor told jurors during closing arguments Tuesday in the former president's hush money trial.

18 minutes ago

Associated Press

A driver with an Oregon-based medical care nonprofit is fatally shot in Ethiopia while in a convoy

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A staff member with an Oregon medical care nonprofit was killed when the team he was traveling with in a convoy was fired upon in Ethiopia, officials said Monday. Mustefa Alkisim was a Medical Teams International driver traveling in the insecure Amhara region of Ethiopia Friday when men fired at the […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

European-Japanese climate research satellite launched from California aboard SpaceX rocket

VANDENBERG SPACE FORCE BASE, Calif. (AP) — A European-Japanese climate research satellite designed to study Earth’s temperature balance was launched into orbit from California on Tuesday. The EarthCARE satellite lifted off from coastal Vandenberg Space Force Base atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket at 3:20 p.m. The satellite was successfully deployed about 10 minutes later, […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Former California water official pleads guilty to conspiring to steal water from irrigation canal

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — A former California water official has pleaded guilty to conspiring to steal water in a deal with federal prosecutors in the state’s crop-rich Central Valley. The Los Angeles Times reports Tuesday that 78-year-old Dennis Falaschi, who used to head the Panoche Water District, entered the plea in federal court in Fresno. […]

4 hours ago

Associated Press

Prosecutors build their case at bribery trial of Sen. Bob Menendez with emails and texts

NEW YORK (AP) — Prosecutors were presenting their bribery case against New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez drip-by-drip on Tuesday, showing jurors a steady stream of documents, emails and phone records that they’ll explain more thoroughly later in the trial. The evidence was being shown to Manhattan federal court jurors through the testimony of an FBI […]

4 hours ago

Associated Press

Authorities urge proper cooking of wild game after 6 relatives fall ill from parasite in bear meat

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reaffirmed the importance of properly cooking wild game after six people became sick from a parasite traced to undercooked bear meat that was served at a family reunion in South Dakota. The six — one in South Dakota, four in Minnesota and one […]

4 hours ago

Sponsored Articles


Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.


Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.

Biden dispatching Sullivan to Tokyo for talks with Japan, Philippines, South Korea officials