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Biden mistakenly thanks Colombia for hosting ASEAN summit in Cambodia

President Biden has now twice referred to Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit host Cambodia as Colombia, including Saturday during remarks opening the talks.

“It was an honor to host at the White House in May, and now that we are back together in Cambodia,” Biden said as he opened the talks. “I look forward to building even stronger progress than we’ve already made. I want to thank the prime minister for Colombia’s leadership as ASEAN chair.”

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The president was speaking from Cambodia, the site of the ASEAN meeting, chaired by Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen.

This mirrored an earlier gaffe made just before departing for the meeting in which he told the press he was “heading over to Colombia” before correcting himself.

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Biden’s talk heavily emphasized the U.S. commitment to free, fair, and ethical trade in the Indo-Pacific. 

His remarks notably did not mention the People’s Republic of China by name but hammered on the need for “cooperation” and adherence to international law.

“Together we will tackle the biggest issues of our time, from climate to health security to defend against significant threats to rules-based order and to threats against the rule of law,” the president remarked. “We’ll build an Indo-Pacific that is free and open, stable and prosperous, resilient and secure.”

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