15 November 2018
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence told leaders of Southeast Asian nations on Thursday that there is no place for "empire and aggression" in the Indo-Pacific region. Pence did not mention China in his remarks at the opening of a summit with ASEAN in Singapore, but stressed that small countries as well as large ones should be allowed to prosper in the Indo-Pacific. The vice president also highlighted the United States' pressure campaign on North Korea.
U.S. VICE PRESIDENT, MIKE PENCE said "Like you, we seek an Indo-Pacific in which all nations, large and small, can prosper and thrive. We all agree that empire and aggression have no place in the Indo-Pacific...Our partnership also includes our pressure campaign regarding North Korea, our collaboration to rid the region of terrorism, our commitment to uphold the freedom of the seas and skies where we stand shoulder to shoulder with you for freedom of navigation. And our determination to ensure that your nations are secure in your sovereign borders - on land, at sea, and in the digital world."
Pence also said Washington had taken action to promote this vision, including steps to spur private investment in infrastructure and a pursuit of trade that is free, fair, and reciprocal.