Submitted by: Chris Danial
The symbolism of the Quad foreign ministers’ meeting on October 6 could not have been more evident. In the middle of a pandemic, when heavy restrictions have been placed on international travel and many multilateral meetings have been postponed or moved onto virtual platforms, the top diplomats of Australia, India, Japan, and the United States convened in Tokyo for the second Quad foreign ministers’ meeting.
Widely viewed as an arrangement to counter China, the Quad meeting occurred alongside rising concerns among its four members regarding instances of Beijing’s aggressive behavior and questions about its role in the initial stages of the COVID-19 outbreak. Unsurprisingly, China has expressed its disapproval at the formation of such “exclusive cliques” and urged “the relevant countries” not to disrupt regional peace, stability and development.