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Cooks welcome meeting with President Biden

Thursday 11 August 2022 | Written by CI News Staff | Published in

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Cooks welcome  meeting with President Biden
United States President Joe Biden. Photo: RNZ

Cook Islands have not had any engagement from US officials on the proposed high-level hosting by the US government intended for next month, says Tepaeru Herrmann, the head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration.

According to RNZ, Pacific Islands Forum leaders are set to meet with United States President Joe Biden next month as Washington aims to accelerate its diplomatic efforts to counter China’s presence in the region.

Herrmann says the Cook Islands Government note as reported by mainstream media the comments by senior US officials currently visiting the Pacific region of US President Biden’s interest in hosting Pacific leaders next month in Washington, in the margins of the UN General Assembly. 

“The Cook Islands Government would welcome elevated and expanded engagement with the Government of the United States, including directly with President Biden. Such elevated engagement would however require in the first instance, direct and timely engagement between the two governments,” she said.

“At this time, we’ve not had any engagement from US officials on the proposed high-level hosting by the US government intended for next month.”

The US deputy Secretary of State, Wendy Sherman, who is on a whirlwind Pacific tour, has confirmed President Biden is “looking forward to welcoming” Pacific leaders to the White House in September, which will coincide with the week of the United Nations' General Assembly.

Sherman said the exact date for the meeting will be announced “very soon”.