Some people on social media, including an account managed by the Republican National Committee (RNC), shared a viral video on May 21 where President Joe Biden tells G7 leaders that he formed an organization called the Quad.
“...I doubt many people in this audience or any other audience would have said that two years after being elected, I’d be able to convince India, Australia, Japan, and the United States to form an organization called the Quad to maintain stability in the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea,” Biden says in the video.
But those posts claim that Biden did not form the group and that President Donald Trump actually re-established it.
Did President Biden form the Quad coalition between the United States, India, Australia and Japan, as he claimed?
No, President Biden did not form the Quad coalition between the United States, India, Australia and Japan. However, he did facilitate the first in-person Quad Leaders’ Summit in 2021.
WHAT WE FOUND
The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, which is often referred to as the Quad, is a “four-country coalition” made up of the United States, Japan, India and Australia, that “claims a common platform of standing for a rules-based order, protecting freedom of navigation and promoting democratic values in the region,” according to the Congressional Research Service (CRS).
The RNC and others were correct when they said Biden did not form the Quad, as he claimed at the G7. Former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe formalized the group in 2007, according to the Associated Press and the CRS. Experts say the Quad was then reestablished during former President Donald Trump’s administration.
According to the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the four countries that make up the Quad “first formed a ‘core group’ during the joint response to the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami” in the Indian Ocean.
“This cooperation provided the basis for the first iteration of the Quad; it met briefly in 2007 before coming apart in 2008,” the CSIS says.
China denounced the series of Quad meetings in 2007 as “an attempt to encircle it.” The group’s efforts then “dissipated amid member leadership transitions, concerns about economic repercussions from China and attention to other national interests,” according to the CRS.
Revitalization of the Quad coalition began during the Trump administration in 2017 and “has accelerated since 2020,” the CRS says. The CSIS also mentions that the Quad “reformed in 2017 and began convening on a bimonthly basis.”
While Biden did not form the Quad, his administration did facilitate the first Quad Leaders’ Summit in 2021.
Biden hosted the first-ever in-person leaders’ summit at the White House on Sept. 24, 2021, bringing together Prime Minister Scott Morrison of Australia, Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of Japan.
“The President made the decision to take the Quad to the leader level shortly after he took office, extending invitations to his Quad counterparts for the first-ever Quad leaders summit in March 2021,” a spokesperson for the president’s National Security Council told VERIFY. “Previously, Quad engagements had only been held at the foreign ministerial level.”
The CRS also credited the Biden administration with boosting the Quad’s profile “as a centerpiece of Indo-Pacific Strategy aimed at strengthening the United States’ commitment to the region.”