Japan, China, Russia and India treated as “xenophobic” by Biden

Japan, China, Russia and India treated as “xenophobic” by Biden
Japan, China, Russia and India treated as “xenophobic” by Biden

Japan reacted on Saturday to comments by American President Joe Biden, who described his Asian ally as “xenophobic”, like China and Russia, with Tokyo deeming this designation “regrettable” and erroneous.

At a campaign meeting Wednesday, Biden lumped together his allies Japan and India and his rivals China and Russia, saying the four economic powers were in trouble because of their refusal to accept immigrants.

“Why is China stalling so economically? Why is Japan having problems? And Russia? And India? Because they are xenophobic. They don’t want immigrants,” the American president said, according to remarks the transcription of which was only made public on Thursday.

In response, Tokyo said Saturday it was “regrettable that comments not based on an accurate understanding of Japan’s policies were made,” according to a government statement.

Biden’s remarks come less than a month after he hosted a lavish state dinner for Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, a rare show of diplomatic favor.

The White House quickly sought to attenuate this unexpected criticism of the American head of state towards Japan. “The point of view that the president defended, and I think that people around the world are aware of it, is that the United States is a country of immigrants, it is in our DNA,” explained the National Security Council spokesman John Kirby Thursday in a press interview.

Tokyo indicated that this clarification had been heard. “We have noted the US government’s explanation that the comments in question were not made with the aim of harming the importance and sustainability of relations between Japan and the United States,” it said. the press release.

The 81-year-old Democrat was attending a campaign rally focused on Asian Americans when he made the remark. He will run for a second term in November, facing former Republican President Donald Trump.

These campaign events are neither filmed nor recorded, but a handful of journalists attend and provide a written report. If China and Russia are rivals of the United States, his comments on Japan and India are surprising.

Joe Biden has been obliged, since he became president, to strengthen ties with America’s allies in Asiaand in particular with New Delhi and Tokyo.

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