Washington Declaration

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Washington Declaration

Today, the President of the United States and the Chancellor of Germany affirm their commitment to close bilateral cooperation in promoting peace, sec

Today, the President of the United States and the Chancellor of Germany affirm their commitment to close bilateral cooperation in promoting peace, security, and prosperity around the world.

The foundation of our relationship is a shared commitment to democratic principles, values, and institutions. Together, we will uphold the rule of law, promote transparency and good governance, and support civil society and independent media. We will defend the rights and dignity of all individuals, and counter injustice and inequality wherever it occurs. We uphold the universal values at the heart of the United Nations Charter and stand together in our commitment to promote respect for human rights everywhere, including by rejecting and responding in concert to violations of human rights. We must act now to demonstrate that democracy delivers for our people at home and that democratic leadership delivers for the world.

We commit ourselves to defending an open world. Across the globe, all nations must be free to determine their political futures free from foreign interference, coercion, or domination by outside powers. As two nations whose economies depend on the free transit of goods around the world, we affirm the critical importance of the freedoms of navigation and overflight and other lawful uses of the sea, consistent with international law. This vision is unachievable in a world carved into competing spheres of influence and we will resist attempts to create them, be it through attempts at territorial annexation, control of digital infrastructure, transnational repression, or weaponized energy flows.

More than three decades after German reunification, we will continue to work tirelessly for a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace. Where outside powers present barriers to the realization of this vision, we will join together to collectively strengthen our defense, cultivate our resilience, and enhance our solidarity. NATO will remain the cornerstone of this effort, and our commitment to Article 5 is ironclad. We underscore the need to build upon our alliances and partnerships for the challenges that lie ahead – including cyber threats, energy security, disinformation, corruption, democratic backsliding, and interference in our elections.

We will work together to ensure that the rules, norms, and standards that govern emerging technologies are channeled toward freedom rather than repression. As technology reshapes our citizens’ lives, our national economies, and our geopolitical environments, it must reflect our core democratic values. We will deepen cooperation between our scientists, engineers, and mathematicians to ensure that the major innovations of this century advance democratic governance, rather than authoritarianism. States need to protect the rights of citizens, and we will resist the use and spread of surveillance technologies to improperly restrict the exercise of human rights.

We recognize our responsibility to lead in the development of global solutions to shared challenges. Our citizens’ lives are subject to disruption by a range of international forces that demand a collective response. We are committed to taking urgent action to address the climate crisis, including by launching the Climate and Energy Partnership to deepen collaboration on the policies and energy technologies needed to accelerate the global net-zero transition. We will work to strengthen global health and health security, including resilience against future pandemics. We will work tirelessly toward a sustainable global economic recovery, constructed on a fair, inclusive, sustainable, rules-based global economy for the 21st century. With shared strength and ingenuity, we will innovate novel solutions to these novel challenges – and work together bilaterally, as well as in the G7 and G20, to ensure the multilateral system, including the UN system, can meet the demands of our time.

Since the end of World War II, countless people from all walks of life – including business and science, civilian and in uniform, civil society organizations, think tanks and academic networks – have strengthened and deepened the bond between our two nations. As a lasting demonstration of our bilateral relationship and our commitment to the above principles, we are launching a U.S.-German Futures Forum that will fully utilize the expertise and innovative power of our societies and recommend solutions to jointly shape our future. To facilitate cooperation on crucial economic issues, we will also establish a U.S.-German Economic Dialogue.

Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
Angela Merkel
July 15, 2021

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