Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. President Joe Biden hailed the “evolution” of the two countries’ alliance as they face down vexing geopolitical challenges together — including the rise of China and the war in Ukraine — as the two leaders held bilateral talks in Hiroshima a day ahead of a Group of Seven summit.

“The bottom line is that when our countries stand together, we stand stronger and I believe the whole world is safer when we do,” Biden told reporters ahead of their 70-minute meeting in the atomic-bombed city.

The U.S. leader noted Tokyo’s robust response to an increasingly complex regional security environment — one where China has threatened self-ruled Taiwan with large-scale military exercises and Russia has sent its warships on ominous voyages around the Japanese archipelago — saying that he was “proud” of the two allies’ willingness to “stand up” for shared values.