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President Joe Biden held his first bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday, the two leaders meeting virtually due to the coronavirus pandemic.

After the virtual meeting, Biden and Trudeau issued a statement expressing the commitment between the two nations. The two world leaders unveiled a “United States-Canada Partnership Roadmap” detailing this commitment on issues such as tackling COVID-19, tackling the climate crisis, strengthening continental defense and strengthening of global alliances.

During their meeting, Trudeau told Mr. Biden that “American leadership has been sorely missed over the past year” – a not-so-cryptic nod to former President Trump’s relationship with Canada and the western world.

To strengthen alliances, the plan calls for a relaunch of the North American Leaders’ Summit as a “re-engagement of solidarity” between the United States, Canada and Mexico, according to the White House. The roadmap aims to “advance our shared vision of prosperity, diversity, equity and justice for all of our citizens,” the White House said.

Trudeau and Mr. Biden have made televised statements about their partnership, but did not hold a traditional joint press conference. Mr Biden has yet to hold a press conference as president.

“We both recognize our responsibility as leading democracies to defend our common values ​​around the world and to strengthen our own democracies at home,” Biden said. It means removing systemic racism and unconscious bias from our institutions and laws as well as from our hearts. Today we agreed to re-establish the Cross Border Crime Forum and work together to modernize our approach to community safety and do as much as possible – do more – to combat racism and discrimination in our two systems. “

The President also referred to the United States ‘commitment to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the two countries’ joint commitment to strong defense. Mr. Biden said the United States is determined to release two Canadians detained in China.

“Human beings do not barter chips,” said the president.

Trudeau made his statement in English and French, beginning by affirming Canada’s commitment to Texans in need. The Canadian Prime Minister expressed Canada’s commitment to fight COVID-19 and other crises. Trudeau said Canada and the United States are “each other’s allies, most important trading partners and oldest friends.”

“The President and I discussed the ambitious new roadmap of partnership based on shared values ​​and priorities that will guide our countries’ work together over the coming years. In the face of COVID-19, climate change, rising inequalities, now is our time So we are not wasting time getting down to business, ”Trudeau said.

Mr. Biden has vowed to rebuild American alliances after four years of former President Donald Trump’s “America First” foreign policy. The president participated in a virtual meeting of the G7 on Friday and pledged up to $ 4 billion to COVAX, an initiative backed by the World Health Organization that aims to ensure equitable access to vaccines around the world.

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