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Published on March 15, 2021 2:38 AM

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US President Joe Biden, left, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken, second left, attend a virtual Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) meeting with leaders of Japan, Australia and India in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, DC, on Friday, March 12, 2021.
(CNN)President Joe Biden declared the United States is "committed to a free, open, secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific region" in a rare op-ed penned with the leaders of India, Australia and Japan.

"Over the course of these past months, each of us has grieved the suffering that our people and the world have endured. But in this dark hour, our partnership offers a spark of hope to light?the path ahead," the leaders wrote in a Washington Post op-ed published Saturday. The alliance said it is trying to "ensure that the Indo-Pacific is accessible and dynamic, governed by international law and bedrock principles such as freedom of navigation and peaceful resolution of disputes, and that all countries are able to make their own political choices, free from coercion." Biden, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of Japan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India and Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia make up a group informally known as the "Quad." While not a formal military alliance like NATO, the Quad, or Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, is seen by some as a potential counterweight to growing Chinese influence and alleged aggression in the Asia-Pacific region. The collation has been denounced by Beijing as an anti-China bloc. Biden had met with the heads of state for the first time in a virtual summit on Friday, marking his first multilateral leader-level summit as President. There, Biden said the agenda covered vaccines, climate and technology among other issues. The US President announced an "ambitious new joint partnership" to boost Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing to benefit the Indo-Pacific region.