White House says no plans to add new members to Quad at this time

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre (AFP photo)

Ahead of the summit of Quad leaders in Australia later this month, the United States said that there are no plans of adding new members to the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD) at this time.

While answering a media query over the expansion of QUAD, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said on Monday, “The Quad was established two years ago. The Quad is still a relatively young partnership. There are no plans for new members at this time. Quad members have agreed that for now, the focus is on cementing the quad’s many strengths.”

Head of state from Quad countries — Australian prime minister Scott Morrison, Japanese prime minister Yoshihide Suga, PM Narendra Modi, and US President Joe Biden are scheduled to meet in Australia on June 24.

“However, the Quad welcomes opportunities to work with a wide range of Indo-Pacific partners, such as through its Indo-Pacific partners on maritime domain awareness, which is delivering cutting edge maritime domain awareness technology around the region,” she added.

The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue is the grouping of four democracies–India, Australia, the US, and Japan–that aims to ensure and support a “free, open and prosperous” Indo-Pacific region.

Earlier, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announced that it will host the Quad Leaders’ Summit on May 24 in Sydney reiterating that it will be a chance to work in cooperation with US, Japan and India.

The May 24th Sydney Summit will showcase other opportunities for the Quad to partner around the region on climate, global health, infrastructure, and more. The Quad’s top priority is ensuring it is well-positioned to deliver for the Indo-Pacific. And so, there’s no conversation on extending or expanding at this time, Jean-Pierre said.

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