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President Joe Biden's address to the United Nations General Assembly will seek to rally allies and partners to take on shared climate, health, and security challenges, a senior administration official said.
Biden's remarks “will center on the proposition that we are closing the chapter on 20 years of war and opening a chapter of intensive diplomacy,” including on trade, clean infrastructure investments, and emerging technologies, the official said, as well as a new approach to counterterrorism and Great Power competition.
Biden will also press U.N. members to boost their contributions of COVID-19 vaccines to poorer countries.
The United States "will also have a series of announcements about our own further contributions, above and beyond what we've already contributed, to ending the pandemic globally," the official said.
The Quad Leaders Summit at the White House on Friday is one example of the cooperation Biden envisages writ large, he added, citing action on COVID-19, climate change, and economic and technology investments.
The White House has faced weeks of scrutiny over a chaotic Afghanistan withdrawal and outcry from France after announcing an Indo-Pacific security pact with Australia and Britain that usurped a multibillion-dollar defense contract between Australia and France.
In response to Washington's announcement of a nuclear submarine deal with Australia and Britain, French President Emmanuel Macron withdrew his country's ambassador to the U.S.
The president is seeking a phone call with Macron this week, but the official said a time had not yet been agreed upon. "That will be an important interaction and engagement as we look to chart a productive path forward," he said. A French official said the request for a call came from the White House.
France continues to be an important security partner to the U.S., including in the Sahel, the senior administration official said, arguing that the White House has remained engaged with allies and partners despite criticism.
The official defended criticism of Biden's foreign policy, which NATO and other allies have argued left them out of crucial decisions.
"If you look at the most significant challenges, the highest priority issues facing the world today, you see the United States has been deeply engaged with allies and partners and with the relevant international institutions," he said. "I think the picture is actually quite positive, despite the differences in perspective on Afghanistan."
He continued: “If you look at the totality of Biden's foreign policy ... then you look at months ahead of what’s on the docket, the president feels very confident about how he can rally the world."
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Original Author: Katherine Doyle