Vice President Kamala Harris today attended the annual East Asia Summit in Jakarta, Indonesia. The Vice President reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to the Indo-Pacific and ASEAN centrality, and emphasized the United States’ strong support for the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific. Vice President Harris underscored the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to working with allies and partners to ensure an Indo-Pacific region that is free, open, prosperous, resilient, and secure. She highlighted the deep economic ties between the United States and Southeast Asia, and reviewed ongoing efforts to promote broad-based prosperity through investing in high-quality and sustainable infrastructure, accelerating the energy transition, and developing secure and resilient supply chains, all of which support ASEAN as an Epicentrum of Growth. She also reiterated the historic progress made this year to advance an Indo-Pacific Economic Framework that provides concrete benefits to all of its members and will drive enduring and broad-based economic growth throughout the region.
The Vice President also underscored the importance of the international rules-based order in preserving decades of peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific, while acknowledging the international community must address growing threats to that order. The Vice President emphasized that freedom of navigation and overflight must be respected in the East China Sea and South China Sea, and that all disputes must be resolved peacefully and in accordance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. Vice President Harris reaffirmed U.S. support for the 2016 UN arbitral tribunal ruling and noted this ruling is final and legally binding. She also reaffirmed the importance of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait. The Vice President welcomed Japan’s continued transparency and engagement with the scientific community, as well as with regional stakeholders, related to its release of treated water from the Fukushima Daiichi site.
Vice President Harris condemned the Burmese military regime’s brutal campaign of violence against the people of Burma, and reaffirmed the importance of taking further action to increase pressure on the Burmese military regime to implement the ASEAN Five Point Consensus and provide for a return to the path of democracy. She also emphasized the threats posed by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and condemned the continued development of its unlawful ballistic missile and nuclear programs. Additionally, she raised concerns regarding the grave human rights abuses being committed by the People’s Republic of China. The Vice President strongly condemned Russia’s brutal and unjust war against Ukraine, noting how Russia’s actions have exacerbated food insecurity and harmed millions of vulnerable people in the Indo-Pacific and across the globe.