This article originally appeared at Reuters:
The United States wants a meeting soon aimed at reviving a four-way dialogue between itself, Japan, India and Australia to deepen security cooperation and coordinate alternatives for regional infrastructure financing to that offered by China, a senior U.S. official said on Friday.
The so-called “Quad” to discuss and cooperate on security emerged briefly as an initiative a decade ago – much to the annoyance of China, which saw as an attempt by regional democracies to contain its advances.
In an interview with Japan’s Nikkei newspaper on Wednesday, Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Kono proposed reviving the forum, which he said he had discussed with U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop on the sidelines of a regional meeting in Manila in August.
According to the Nikkei, the purpose would be to secure a peaceful maritime zone from Asia to Africa. It said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe would officially propose the dialogue partnership to U.S. President Donald Trump on Nov. 6, when the U.S. leader visits Japan as part of an Asian tour that will also take him to China.
Alice Wells, Washington’s acting assistant secretary of state for South Asia, told reporters after accompanying Tillerson on a visit to India that Washington was “looking at a working level quadrilateral meeting in the near term.”