Biden Bits: “Will Not Waver”…

Biden Tweets Logo. Image by Lenny Ghoul.

It’s Thursday…

President Biden’s public schedule for 07/13/2023:

4:30 AM
Pool Call Time
Out-of-Town Pool Call Time (11:30 AM Local)
Helsinki, FinlandOut-of-Town Pool
6:00 AM
Bilateral Meeting
The President participates in a bilateral meeting with President Sauli Niinistö of the Republic of Finland (1:00 PM Local)
Presidential Palace, Helsinki Out-of-Town Pool Spray
7:00 AM
Family Photo w/Nordic Leaders
The President participates in a family photo with Nordic Leaders (2:00 PM Local)
Presidential Palace, HelsinkiOut-of-Town Pool
7:15 AM
U.S-Nordic Leaders’ Summit
The President participates in the U.S.-Nordic Leaders’ Summit (2:15 PM Local)
Presidential Palace, HelsinkiOut-of-Town Pool Spray
10:30 AM
Joint-Presser
The President holds a joint press conference with President Sauli Niinistö of the Republic of Finland (5:30 PM Local)
Presidential Palace, Helsinki Open Press
12:40 PM
Leaves Finland
The President departs Helsinki, Finland en route to Washington, DC (7:40 PM Local)
Presidential Palace, Helsinki Out-of-Town Pool
7:55 PM
Pool Call Time
In-Town Pool Call Time
The White House In-Town Pool
9:25 PM
Leaves Joint Base Andrews
The President departs Joint Base Andrews en route to the White House
Joint Base Andrews Out-of-Town Pool
9:35 PM
Arrives Home
The President arrives at the White House
South Lawn Open Press

“Bidenomics” Tweet

From Wednesday…

BLS.gov released the Consumer Price Index for June 2023, on Wednesday…

President Biden’s full statement:

Good jobs and lower costs: That’s Bidenomics in action. Today’s report brings new and encouraging evidence that inflation is falling while our economy remains strong. Annual inflation has fallen each of the last twelve months and is now down to 3%. We’ve made this progress while unemployment remains near record lows and a higher share of working age Americans are in jobs now than in 20 years. Real wages for the average American worker are now higher than they were before the pandemic, with lower wage workers seeing the largest gains. Our progress creating jobs while lowering costs for families is no accident, and I will continue to fight for lower costs for families every day. I ran for office to grow the economy from the middle out and bottom up, not the top down: that’s exactly what we’re doing.

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

NATO/Ukraine Tweets

From Wednesday…

The YouTube is 23 minutes and 23 seconds long. His full remarks can be found here.

President Biden:

And even after all this time, Putin still doubts our staying power.  He’s still making a bad bet that the conviction and the unity among the United States and our Allies and partners will break down. 

He still doesn’t understand that our commitment to our values, our freedom is something he [we] can never, never, ever, ever walk away from.  It’s who we are.  (Applause.)  I mean it — it’s who we are.  It’s who we are.   

[snip]

We have witnessed your historic journey.  And I’m proud to call Lithuania a friend, partner, and Ally.  Ally.  Ally.  (Applause.)
Soon, NATO will be the 32nd freestanding — have free- — 33 — 32 freestanding members — (laughter) — standing together to defend our people and our territory, beyond — beyond all the rest, bound by democratic values to make us strong and by our sacred oath that an attack against — it is a sacred oath — attack against one is an attack against all.  Because each member of NATO knows that the strength of our people and the power of our unity cannot be denied.  (Applause.)

[snip]

When Putin, and his craven lust for land and power, unleashed his brutal war on Ukraine, he was betting NATO would break apart.  He was betting NATO would break.  He thought our unity would shatter at the first testing.  He thought democratic leaders would be weak.  But he thought wrong.  (Applause.)

[snip]

Folks, the road that lies before us is hard.  It will challenge us, summon the best of ourselves to hold faith in one another and never give up, never lose hope.  Never. 

Every day, we have to make the choice.  Every day, we must summon the strength to stand for what is right, to stand for what is true, to stand for freedom, to stand together.

[snip]

*the video clip in the shared tweet is 32 seconds long*

Since this war began, I’ve stood with President Zelenskyy — as I just spent about an hour with him — both in Washington, in Kyiv, in Hi- — in Hiroshima, and now in Vilnius, to declare to the world what I say again: We will not waver.  We will not waver.  (Applause.)  I mean that.  Our commitment to Ukraine will not weaken.  We will stand for liberty and freedom today, tomorrow, and for as long as it takes.  (Applause.)

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

Remarks by President Biden, Prime Minister Kishida of Japan, and President Zelenskyy of Ukraine in a G7 Joint Declaration of Support for Ukraine | Vilnius, Lithuania (07/12/2023):

President Biden:

We’ve just concluded the first meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Council and — where all our Allies agreed Ukraine’s future lies with NATO.  That’s not a surprise to any of us, I don’t think.  I hope it’s not a surprise to you, Mr. President.

Allies all agreed to lift the requirements for Membership Action Plan for Ukraine and to create a path to NATO membership while Ukraine continues to make progress on necessary reforms. 

But we’re not waiting for that process to be finished to make the long-term commitments that we’re making to Ukraine’s security.  Volodymyr and I, we — the — I shouldn’t be so familiar — Mr. Zelenskyy and I talked about the kind of guarantees we could make in the meantime when I was in Ukraine and when we met in other places.

And so, today, the long-term commitments we’re making are — are backed up by the notion that in the meantime we’re going to provide security to Ukraine for its needs and against any aggression that may occur. 

Today, the members of the G7 are launching a Joint Declaration of Support for Ukraine to make it clear that our support will last long into the future. 

This starts a process by which each of our nations and any other nation who wishes to participate will negotiate long-term bilateral security commitments with and to Ukraine. 

We’re going to help Ukraine build a strong, capable defense across land, air, and sea from which we will force the — it will be a force of stability in the region and deter against any and all threats. 

I want to thank my fellow G7 leaders and President Zelenskyy for their work to make this happen.  I think it’s a powerful statement — a powerful statement of our commitment to Ukraine as it defends its freedom today and as it rebuilds the future for — and we’re going to be there as long as that takes. 

And, again, I thank all my colleagues for their support for this.  (Applause.)  

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

European Council posted the G7: Joint Declaration of Support for Ukraine:

We, the Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7), reaffirm our unwavering commitment to the strategic objective of a free, independent, democratic, and sovereign Ukraine, within its internationally recognized borders, capable of defending itself and deterring future aggression.

We affirm that the security of Ukraine is integral to the security of the Euro-Atlantic region.

We consider Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine to be a threat to international peace and security, a flagrant violation of international law, including the UN Charter, and incompatible with our security interests. We will stand with Ukraine as it defends itself against Russian aggression, for as long as it takes.

We stand united in our enduring support for Ukraine, rooted in our shared democratic values and interests, above all, respect for the UN Charter and the principles of territorial integrity and sovereignty.

Today we are launching negotiations with Ukraine to formalize — through bilateral security commitments and arrangements aligned with this multilateral framework, in accordance with our respective legal and constitutional requirements — our enduring support to Ukraine as it defends its sovereignty and territorial integrity, rebuilds its economy, protects its citizens, and pursues integration into the Euro-Atlantic community. We will direct our teams to begin these discussions immediately.

We will each work with Ukraine on specific, bilateral, long-term security commitments and arrangements towards:

a) Ensuring a sustainable force capable of defending Ukraine now and deterring Russian aggression in the future, through the continued provision of:

Consilium.Europa.EU. 07/12/2023.

● security assistance and modern military equipment, across land, air, and sea domains – prioritizing air defense, artillery and long-range fires, armored vehicles, and other key capabilities, such as combat air, and by promoting increased interoperability with Euro-Atlantic partners;

● support to further develop Ukraine’s defense industrial base;

● training and training exercises for Ukrainian forces;

● intelligence sharing and cooperation;

● support for cyber defense, security, and resilience initiatives, including to address hybrid threats.

b) Strengthening Ukraine’s economic stability and resilience, including through reconstruction and recovery efforts, to create the conditions conducive to promoting Ukraine’s economic prosperity, including its energy security.

c) Providing technical and financial support for Ukraine’s immediate needs stemming from Russia’s war as well as to enable Ukraine to continue implementing the effective reform agenda that will support the good governance necessary to advance towards its Euro-Atlantic aspirations.

In the event of future Russian armed attack, we intend to immediately consult with Ukraine to determine appropriate next steps. We intend, in accordance with our respective legal and constitutional requirements, to provide Ukraine with swift and sustained security assistance, modern military equipment across land, sea and air domains, and economic assistance, to impose economic and other costs on Russia, and to consult with Ukraine on its needs as it exercises its right of self-defense enshrined in Article 51 of the UN Charter. To this end, we will work with Ukraine on an enhanced package of security commitments and arrangements in case of future aggression to enable Ukraine to defend its territory and sovereignty.

In addition to the elements articulated above, we remain committed to supporting Ukraine by holding Russia accountable. This includes working to ensure that the costs to Russia of its aggression continue to rise, including through sanctions and export controls, as well as supporting efforts to hold to account those responsible for war crimes and other international crimes committed in and against Ukraine, including those involving attacks on critical civilian infrastructure. There must be no impunity for war crimes and other atrocities. In this context, we reiterate our commitment to holding those responsible to account, consistent with international law, including by supporting the efforts of international mechanisms, such as the International Criminal Court (ICC).

We reaffirm that, consistent with our respective legal systems, Russia’s sovereign assets in our jurisdictions will remain immobilized until Russia pays for the damage it has caused to Ukraine. We recognize the need for the establishment of an international mechanism for reparation of damages, loss or injury caused by Russian aggression and express our readiness to explore options for the development of appropriate mechanisms.

For its part, Ukraine is committed to:

a) Contributing positively to partner security and to strengthen transparency and accountability measures with regard to partner assistance;

b) Continuing implementation of the law enforcement, judiciary, anti-corruption, corporate governance, economic, security sector, and state management reforms that underscore its commitments to democracy, the rule of law, respect for human rights and media freedoms, and put its economy on a sustainable path;

c) Advancing defense reforms and modernization including by strengthening democratic civilian control of the military and improving efficiency and transparency across Ukraine’s defense institutions and industry.

The EU and its Member States stand ready to contribute to this effort and will swiftly consider the modalities of such contribution.

This effort will be taken forward while Ukraine pursues a pathway toward future membership in the Euro-Atlantic community.

Other countries that wish to contribute to this effort to ensure a free, strong, independent, and sovereign Ukraine may join this Joint Declaration at any time.

Consilium.Europa.EU. 07/12/2023.

Remarks by President Biden and President Gitanas Nausėda of Lithuania Before Bilateral Meeting | Vilnius, Lithuania (07/11/2023)

The video clip is 58 seconds long.

President Gitanas Nausėda of Lithuania:

And I think the NATO Summit, which takes place in Vilnius, in absolutely near proximity to adversary countries — this is symbolic event — symbolic.  But also, at the same time, this is a great opportunity to take the bold decisions, and we expect that they will be done.

[snip]

We are probably — Lithuania is one of the most enthusiastic supporters of transatlantic bond in Europe — in European Union because we think that your participation, your attention is extremely important in this field of geopolitical uncertainty

[snip]

And all the Lithuanian people greet you so warmly.  Even Vilnius — you see it’s a little bit empty right now, but this is because of security restrictions and some people decided to leave the city just to — to avoid some inconveniences.  But, you know, in our hearts — from bottom of our hearts, we welcome your visit, we welcome your arrival, and we are looking forward to cooperate with United States in the future.

White House.gov. 07/11/2023.

President Biden:

And the United States is here today to reaffirm our commitment to NATO but also to Vilnius.  Look, we — we go back a long way.  And the — when — we — we’re committed to Lithuania and to the Baltics and to NATO.

[snip]

And I want to thank you, Mr. President, for hosting this historic summit at an important time: the first time that NATO leaders will meet with 31 together, and looking forward to meeting very soon with 32 members with the addition of Sweden.

[snip]

So, I look forward to our conversation today and to continuing to stand with you and all the people of Lithuania for a simple reason: shared values.  We have the same value set.  It’s important.  That’s what NATO is all about.  That’s what transatlantic alliance is about.
 
And as you probably heard, I am a very strong supporter of the transatlantic alliance.  I’ve learned that nothing happens here that doesn’t affect us.  So, we’re all in

White House.gov. 07/11/2023.

Remarks by President Biden and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of the Republic of Turkey Before Bilateral Meeting | Vilnius, Lithuania (07/11/2023)

The video clip is 36 seconds long.

President Biden:

Mr. President, it’s good to see you again — delighted to be with you.  And, you know, we’re at this historic summit meeting.  We’re resolving a lot of things, I hope. 
 
And you made — you made all the more historic by the agreement you reached yesterday in the admission of Sweden and how you’re going to proceed.  I want to thank you for your diplomacy and your courage to take that on.  And I want to thank you for your leadership, Mr. President
 
This summit is reaffirming our commitment to NATO defense with close Allies in NATO, and I hope we can make it even stronger.

White House.gov. 07/11/2023.

Remarks by President Biden and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine Before Bilateral Meeting | Vilnius, Lithuania (07/12/2023)

President Biden:

Well, Mr. President, welcome.  And I hope you all got a sense today from all my colleagues that — how — how much that you have — how much support you have.  It’s real.  And I hope we finally have put to bed the notion about whether or not Ukraine is welcome in NATO.  It’s going to happen.  We’re moving — you’re all moving in the right direction.  I think it’s just a matter of getting by the next few months here. 

So thank you, thank you, thank you.

And, you know, it’s hard to believe: 500 days.  It’s easy for me just mostly — I’ve been in and out of Ukraine a lot before the war, and some since the war.  But I’m going to say again what I’ve said to you many times, not only all of you, but your people — your sons, your daughters, your husbands, your wives, your friends: You’re incredible.

Ukraine — the whole world has seen the courage — I really — I mean this from the bottom of my heart: The courage and commitment of the average Ukrainian — when you see a 65-year-old woman on television after her apartment has been bombed out, picking up the pieces, going to help the next-door neighbor.  I mean, it’s — it’s just astounding.  You set an example for the whole world of what constitutes genuine courage in my — I mean — from the bottom of my heart, I mean that — what courage means.  And, you know, I think it’s — your resilience and your resolve has been a model for the whole world to see. 

And the frustration, I can only imagine.  I know you’re many times frustrated about when things — what things get to you quickly enough and what’s getting to you and how we’re getting there.  But I promise you, the United States is doing everything we can to get you what you need as rapidly as we can get it to you. 

And the Secretary of Defense has been a constant, constant  — how can I say it? — the refrain — from the Defense Department and everywhere else to — and calling other secretaries of defense around the — around the world to say, “Let’s get some help.” 

So I just want you to know it’s real.  And, you know, if you’re — in Vilnius, we held the first, as you well know, NATO-Ukraine Council.  But you and I talked about this beforehand, about the commitments — the security commitments we were going to make while it becomes official — until it becomes official.  And I think that’s important. 

And I might — I want to tell you: When I got here, Mr. President, and I started to sell that idea to other heads of state, there was no re- — there was no reluctance.  There was no — no “Well, I don’t want to ele-…”  It was — everybody just said, “Okay.  Let’s sign on.”

So, it’s real. 

You’ve done an enormous job.  You have a lot more to do, I know.  And — and I just think that, you know, we’re going to make sure that you get what you need. 

And I look forward to the day when we’re having the meeting celebrating your official — official membership in NATO. 

So, thank you for what you’re doing. 

And the bad news for you is: We’re not going anywhere.  (Laughter.)  You’re stuck with us.

Well, thank you.

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

President Zelenskyy:

Thank you very much, Mr. President.  And I will start.

You — you said about 500 days.  It’s really — really a difficult job for our people — soldiers and civilians, mothers, fathers, and children — really, to fight for — for their life — for their life and for these values. 

And — and thank you very much that all these days you are with us.  I mean, you and Americans, all of America — Americans and Congress.  I mean, thank you, Mr. President, that you — like we say, shoulder-to-shoulder with us from those days of full-scale war.  We appreciate for this very much.

And really — really, you know, we understand you’re leading support, because when you give such messages and when you gave sometimes some weapon — I’m — I’m sorry that I’m — but I want to say to journalists, like I said during our meeting, our council, that it’s very simple, you know, to criticize, for example, clusters ammunition, which you made decision — difficult political decision.  But it’s — but you have to know that Russia used such weapon from the first days, not only full-scale war — from those days of occupation of Crimea, from 2014 and ‘15, in all our territories.  In Donbas, they used it.  And now they continuing doing.  And that you gave us — this decision will help us to save us. 

And that’s why my appreciation for the — and I didn’t hear from all the, you know, parts of the world when — when Russia began to use it — I didn’t hear that some of, you know, countries criticized Russia.  You know?  But I think that it was very useful to put them. 

So, thank you so much for this help.  We really counted on it — not only on this.  I mean this — totally.  And you gave us huge support.

I want to thank to all Americans.  We understand that it’s more than four- — 43 billions for today.  It’s big support.  And I understand that it’s all your money, but — but you have to know that you spend this money for — for — not — not just for fighting; you spend this money for our lives.  And the — I think that we save the — the lives for — for Europe and for all the world.

So, thank you very much for this also summit.  At — at the — at the end of the summit, we — we had — I think this council had great success and security guarantees, as you said, that we began to speak it — about it in Kyiv.

So, now we see that we had — you had great idea, that G7 — and now I know that last (inaudible) that also there are countries which joined to G7 decisions, and I think it will help very much because it — it’s real effect that — it’s very (inaudible) phase.

So, thank you. 

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

President Biden:

Well, thank you.  And thank you for acknowledging the American people.  I think it’s correct that we are a large country, but I think we’ve given more than every other nation combined in terms of assistance and cost. 

And the American people are supportive — they’re supportive — because they know it’s — it’s about you, but it’s about more than you.  It’s about innocent people around the world and the absolute brutality with which Putin is acting and the Russians are moving on.  It’s just — it’s just some — like something out of the 14th century the way they’re acting. 

And so — but — but I can’t emphasize enough. 

And, by the way, I know you thanked him, but I think we talked about it before.  I went to Tokyo years — more — a couple years ago.  The idea that Kishida is increasing their defense budget, having to lower their domestic budget, to aid directly and get directly involved in what’s happening in Ukraine is remarkable.

The sad, sad news is you’re in this situation.  The incredible news is it’s bringing the world together.  It’s bringing the world together in a way that — it’s a hell of a price to pay, but it’s bringing the world together.  And people are realizing that they just can’t stand by and let this kind of aggression occur.

Any rate, I thank you, and we got a lot to talk about.  So, somebody is going to have to say, “The press has to leave.”  (Laughter.)

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

Q&A:

Q President Zelenskyy, are you satisfied with what you got from NATO? You were so frustrated yesterday. Is this enough? Are you satisfied, sir?

PRESIDENT ZELENSKYY: I think, at the end of summit, we — we have great unity from our leaders and security guarantees, that the success for this summit. I think so, but it’s my opinion. Thank you.

Q Thank you, sir.

Q President Zelenskyy, how soon after the war would you like to be in NATO? How soon after the war would you like to join NATO?

PRESIDENT BIDEN: An hour and 20 minutes. You guys ask really insightful questions.

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

The White House posted the following readout:

President Joe Biden met with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine in Vilnius on July 12, 2023.  President Biden emphasized the enduring U.S. commitment to supporting Ukraine’s defense against Russia’s war of aggression and U.S. support for Ukraine as it pursues integration into the Euro-Atlantic community.  The leaders welcomed the launch of the Declaration of Support for Ukraine by G7 Leaders and President Zelenskyy immediately prior to their meeting, and discussed US readiness to begin negotiations with Ukraine on bilateral security commitments to ensure a sustainable force capable of defending Ukraine now and in the future.  The leaders also discussed Ukraine’s ongoing counteroffensive and continued U.S. assistance to support this effort.

White House.gov. 07/12/2023.

PACT Act Tweet

From Wednesday…

Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics Act of 2022 (PACT Act, 08/10/2022).


Finland Tweet

From Thursday…

The YouTube is 1 hour and 21 minutes long. The joint-presser starts at the 53 minute and 24 mark. Full remarks have not been posted.

From the White House…

Remarks by President Biden and President Sauli Niinistö of the Republic of Finland Before Bilateral Meeting | Helsinki, Finland (07/13/2023):

PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  So, Mr. President, ladies and gentlemen, it’s a great pleasure to wish you welcome to Finland.  And I continue by thanking you for your strong support and your strong will to support us during the time that Finland has entered to a new era in our security policy.
 
And I have to tell you that this week in Vilnius was very impressive to experience the way you created unity amongst Allies.  That was great to see.
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  Thank you.
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  So, once again, I warmly welcome you, and I guess you got the best welcomes already on the streets of Helsinki — (laughter) — which are (inaudible).
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  By the way, they are.  They’re very –very gracious.  Very gracious.
 
Well, it’s a delight to be here.  It’s good to be back in Finland.  This is my second visit.  And it’s — you know, I remember a conversation you and I had when you called to come to the White House to talk about being a member —
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  Yes.
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  — of NATO.  And it took me about three seconds to say, “Yes.”  Strong support.
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  Yes.  (Laughs.)
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  No, I mean it sincerely, because we had — we launched your ratification process — the fastest it’s occurred in modern history.  The fastest ratification period in modern history.
 
You may remember my telling you — I said to our friend in the east that he wants the Finlandization of NATO; well, you’re going to get the NATO-ization of Finland.
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  (Laughs.)
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  But all kidding aside, you know, you’re — you’ve been a great partner.  We’re great allies.  And, you know, Finland and the United States — I think we’re stronger together.  And I really mean that.  You’ve been an incredible asset to NATO and to the world.
 
The — and the main reason is we have the same value set.  I really mean that.  It really matters.  And, you know, we’re deepening our defense cooperation to ensure that — the security of our people as we modernize your air force with the F-35 aircraft, which you already had.
 
And together, we’re standing for shared democratic values.  That’s what it’s all about.  I really think — and you’re very gracious and kind to give me credit for unity at — at NATO.  But I think it’s — I’ve been doing this a long time; I don’t think NATO has ever been stronger.
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  You could sense a feeling of that.
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  No, I — I believe that.
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  Yeah.
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  And we had a — a very, very — I had a very good, long meeting with Zelenskyy, who ended up being very happy, and met with his military people.
 
And I think there’s a — I — it’s a different era in the nature of our relationship and bringing along Sweden as well.  It makes a gigantic difference.
 
So, I’m anxious to continue to work with you.
 
PRESIDENT NIINISTÖ:  It seems that when things get serious also, people understand that we have to stick together.
 
PRESIDENT BIDEN:  And you putting together this U.S.-Nordic Summit means a lot to me as well, so I’m looking forward to meeting our colleagues.  But I want to thank you.  I mean, you’ve been an incredible, incredible partner.

White House.gov. 07/13/2023.

Readout of President Joe Biden’s Meeting with President Sauli Niinistö of Finland (07/13/2023):

President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. met in Helsinki with President Sauli Niinistö of Finland on July 13 ahead of the third U.S.-Nordics Summit meeting.  The leaders reaffirmed their unwavering commitment to support Ukraine as it continues to defend itself against Russian aggression.  President Biden congratulated Finland on becoming our newest NATO Ally and welcomed its role as a regional security provider.  Both leaders welcomed the recent agreement between Türkiye, Sweden and NATO for President Erdoğan to send Sweden’s NATO accession protocol to Turkish parliament for ratification, and underscored their desire to welcome Sweden into NATO as soon as possible.  President Biden and President Niinistö also took note of the recently signed co-financing agreement between the U.S. and Finnish export credit agencies, which will enable the United States and Finland to partner more closely on high priority projects like 5G telecommunications and climate.

White House.gov. 07/13/2023.

Readout of the Third United States – Nordic Leaders’ Summit (07/13/2023):

On 13 July 2023, the Presidents of Finland and the United States and the Prime Ministers of Denmark, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden met in Helsinki for the third U.S.-Nordic Leaders’ Summit. Building on the previous meetings in the same format, the leaders reconfirmed the strong U.S.-Nordic partnership and the intensifying cooperation between their countries, focusing on security, the environment, technology and society.
 
On security, the Nordic countries and the United States reiterated their unequivocal condemnation of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. They remained unwavering in their support for Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders. They pledged to continue their support for Ukraine for as long as it takes, including through sustained security, economic, legal, and humanitarian assistance. The leaders committed to continue diplomatic outreach to build the widest possible international support for a just and lasting peace in Ukraine founded on the principles of the UN Charter. This includes an increased engagement and dialogue with global partners on the challenges faced due to the war.     
 
Meeting immediately after the NATO Summit in Vilnius, the leaders reconfirmed the importance of the Alliance for regional and transatlantic security and stability. The United States and Nordic leaders welcomed the 10 July 2023 statement by Sweden, Türkiye, and NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg and look forward to Sweden joining NATO as soon as possible. The leaders noted that Finnish and Swedish NATO membership will strengthen the ability of the Nordic region to contribute even further to the security of all NATO Allies. The Nordic countries also noted their appreciation for the continued U.S. commitment to transatlantic, European and Northern European security, and they stand ready to deepen their security and defense cooperation with the United States, including through the Nordic Defense Cooperation framework.
 
On the environment, the leaders underscored that climate change and biodiversity loss are among the most critical challenges facing our planet. In this context, the leaders noted the importance of protecting and preserving the Arctic and promoting its sustainable economic development, working in consultation with the indigenous peoples of the Arctic. U.S. and Nordic leaders discussed ways to intensify cooperation on clean technologies, resource and energy efficiency, energy security, critical mineral resources, and resilient supply chains. They noted that cooperation on these issues is critical to achieving shared goals of tackling the climate crisis, accelerating the clean energy transition, and upholding high environmental, social, labor, and governance standards. The leaders are committed to pursuing the opportunities in the transition, enabling new jobs and growth. The United States and the Nordic countries also work closely together in relevant international fora to address climate change, biodiversity loss, ocean health, and sustainable development.  
 
On technology, the leaders recognized the crucial significance of critical and emerging technologies—with appropriate guardrails and risk mitigation measures—for global prosperity and security. The United States and the Nordic countries committed to step up cooperation on technologies such as 5G and 6G, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and quantum technologies. They noted that cooperation on fundamental and applied research enables the United States and Nordic partners to stay at the technological forefront and to develop technologies and standards that align with common values and interests and are applied in ways that protect democracy and uphold human rights and fundamental freedoms. The leaders underlined the strategic importance of international connectivity.
 
On society, the leaders reaffirmed the fundamental and shared values of democracy, respect for human rights, gender equality, the protection and equal treatment of all people, rule of law, and economic freedom as the basis of U.S.-Nordic cooperation. These values are indispensable to the resilience of our societies. From that foundation, increased cooperation between the United States and the Nordic countries will help reduce critical strategic dependencies and vulnerabilities and create a more prosperous and secure future for all our citizens. The leaders stressed the importance of people-to-people connections between their countries at all levels as an essential component of U.S.-Nordic ties.

White House.gov. 07/13/2023.

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Member of the Free Press who is politically homeless and a political junkie.

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