Canada has proposed creating a quadruple cooperation framework with Japan, South Korea and the United States as part of efforts to counter China and Russia, diplomatic sources said Sunday.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau conveyed the idea directly to Prime Minister Fumio Kishida when he visited Ottawa in January, the sources said, adding that it believes the expansion of the existing trilateral mechanism involving the U.S. and its key Asian allies will help boost ties among liberal democracies in the Pacific Rim region.

U.S. diplomats said Washington is in favor of Ottawa's plan to deepen cooperation with Tokyo and Seoul, whose bilateral ties have been quickly improving in recent weeks.