Biden to speak at UN General Assembly on Sept 21, says White House

US President Joe Biden, weakened after a chaotic US military withdrawal from Afghanistan that greatly disturbed some of Washington’s allies, is heading into a series of diplomatic meetings in the coming weeks and months. ― Reuters pic
US President Joe Biden, weakened after a chaotic US military withdrawal from Afghanistan that greatly disturbed some of Washington’s allies, is heading into a series of diplomatic meetings in the coming weeks and months. ― Reuters pic

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WASHINGTON, Sept 14 — US President Joe Biden will travel to New York City on September 21 to address the United Nations General Assembly, the White House said yesterday.

The largest diplomatic meeting in the world, which was held entirely virtually last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, will be held this year with a hybrid in-person-virtual format.

Biden, weakened after a chaotic US military withdrawal from Afghanistan that greatly disturbed some of Washington’s allies, is heading into a series of diplomatic meetings in the coming weeks and months.

Earlier yesterday, the White House announced the president will host the prime ministers of Australia, India and Japan at the White House on September 24.

The diplomatic grouping dubbed the Quad — or Quadrilateral Security Dialogue — is seen as a bid to counterbalance China’s growing economic and military reach in the Asia-Pacific region.

Quad leaders held online talks in March, and ministers from the four countries have also held in-person discussions, but the meeting at the White House will be the first in-person summit.

Any talks between the four countries would likely touch on the situation in Afghanistan, as well as offer an opportunity to present a united front before a G20 meeting in Rome in October, Japanese media said last week.

The G20 summit in Rome and the major UN climate meeting COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland, will follow in late October and early November.

In December, Biden will gather world leaders for a virtual “Summit for Democracy” that is being seen as a challenge to China and an alternative to the traditional G20 meeting. The list of participants for the summit has so far not been revealed. — AFP

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