Joe Biden

Remarks Prior to a Meeting With President Yoon Suk Yeol of South Korea and an Exchange With Reporters

April 26, 2023

President Biden. Well, Mr. President, a friend, we're honored to celebrate with you the 70th—the 70th—anniversary of our alliance with you, with Korea. And the—and President Eisenhower said all those years ago, he said, quote, "The security of an individual nation in a free world depends upon the security of its partners."

And today I'm proud to say, Mr. President, I think that our partnership is ready to take on any challenges we may face. We see it in the Indo-Pacific, where our alliance is the linchpin of regional security and prosperity.

And we see it—we see it in the Indo-Pacific, where our alliance is the linchpin of that security. And we see it in our defense of democratic values—from the R.O.K. leading the next Summit for Democracy, to our shared commitment to stand with Ukraine as it defends its democracy against Russia's assault.

And we also see it in the way we're doubling down on our cooperation as allies, even as the D.P.R.K. ramps up its challenges.

And we see it in our growing economic cooperation. R.O.K. businesses are investing billions in the United States. And together, we're building the future, everything from electric vehicles and batteries, to solar power, to semiconductors.

Mr. President, I want to thank you and your courageous, principled diplomacy with Japan, which strengthens our trilateral partnership. It makes an enormous difference.

I'm looking forward to our meeting today. And most importantly, I'm looking forward to the future our countries will forge together.

Thank you for being here.

President Yoon. Mr. President, thank you very much for your warm welcome once again. It is indeed meaningful for me to talk to you here at the Oval Office. This is the very place where the Presidents of the United States strive to realize a nation that embodies the spirit of the Constitution written by the Founding Fathers.

I suppose that many important decisions regarding the Republic of Korea were also made at this office. I believe I was only able to be here today as a consequence of all those moments of history. The journey of the R.O.K.-U.S. alliance over the past 70 years proves that our predecessors' decisions were right and wise.

Korea rose from the ashes of war and has become one of the leading countries of the international community. Now, the R.O.K.-U.S. alliance is not only the linchpin of peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula, but also across the globe.

Mr. President, our alliance is an alliance of values based on our shared universal values of freedom and democracy. It is not a contractual relationship of convenience only seeking for interest. Guided by our shared values, our alliance is an everlasting partnership.

The R.O.K.-U.S. alliance is also resilient. Together, we can resolve any issues between us through close consultations. This is the reason that the R.O.K.-U.S. alliance is now transforming into a true global alliance.

Mr. President, attempts to alter status quo by force, supply chain fragmentation and disruption, challenges in food and energy security are threatening global peace and stability. As a value alliance, we can together play a critical role in navigating through all of these challenges, Mr. President.

Mr. President, our summit talks today will set a historic milestone for the alliance, marching anew toward the peace and prosperity of the world as a global alliance.

[At this point, President Biden and President Yoon shook hands.]

President Yoon. [Inaudible]

President Biden. Agreed.

All right. Thank you all.

Q. Mr. President, a comment on your reelection, sir?

Q. [Inaudible]—call with Xi, Mr. President?

[Several reporters spoke at once.]

President Biden. We'll see you in the Rose Garden.

2024 Presidential Election

Q. Mr. President, a comment on your reelection, sir?

President Biden. Underway.

NOTE: The President spoke at 11:16 a.m. in the Oval Office at the White House. A reporter referred to President Xi Jinping of China. President Yoon spoke in Korean, and his remarks were translated by an interpreter.

Joseph R. Biden, Remarks Prior to a Meeting With President Yoon Suk Yeol of South Korea and an Exchange With Reporters Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/360716

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