Courtesy call on Mr. Takeaki Matsumoto, Minister for Foreign Affairs, by Dr. Kurt M. Campbell, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, and Mr. Wallace C. Gregson, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense.
March 10, 2011
Today (Thursday, March 10), Mr. Takeaki Matsumoto, Minister for Foreign Affairs, received a courtesy call from Dr. Kurt M. Campbell, Assistant Secretary of State (A/S), and Mr. Wallace C. Gregson, Assistant Secretary of Defense (ASD), among other officials. The outline of the meeting is as follows.
- Minister Matsumoto explained that the Japan-U.S. alliance is the linchpin of Japanese diplomacy, and that this has absolutely not changed with the resignation of former Foreign Minister Seiji Maehara. He also expressed his intention to accelerate the work to deepen the alliance with the three pillars - security, economy, and cultural and people-to-people exchanges - toward the Prime Minister's visit to the U.S. in the first half of this year, with the aim of creating a good vision of the Japan-U.S. alliance for the 21st century.
- Congratulating Minister Matsumoto on his inauguration, A/S Campbell stated that he and ASD Gregson wish to cooperate even more closely.
- A/S Campbell expressed his deep regret personally and also on behalf of the U.S. government, with regard to the statements allegedly attributed to Mr. Kevin K. Maher, Director of the Office of Japan Affairs, US Department of State. A/S Campbell apologized and explained that the statements did not reflect the warm appreciation and friendship of the U.S. toward the Okinawan people. A/S Campbell gave an explanation that U.S. Ambassador John V. Roos was to visit Okinawa on the same day to apologize and that the U.S. government took measures to replace Director of the Office of Japan Affairs. In response, Minister Matsumoto stated that if what had been reported in the media was true, the statements would seriously hurt feelings not only of Okinawan people but also of all Japanese and were unacceptable and deeply regrettable. In addition, Minister Matsumoto said that he understood that the series of prompt and appropriate responses taken by the U.S. government this time, such as the apology from the U.S. government, Ambassador Roos' visit to Okinawa, and the replacement of Director of the Office of Japan Affairs reflected how much the U.S. government puts its emphasis on Japan-U.S. relations.
- In regard with Japan-U.S. security cooperation, the core component of Japan-U.S. alliance, Minister Matsumoto, A/S Campbell, and ASD Gregson confirmed to advance specific Japan-U.S. security cooperation in a wide range of fields and to carry out the realignment of the U.S. forces including the issue of the relocation of Futenma Air Station and the reduction of the impact of bases on Okinawa in accordance with the Japan-U.S. agreement last May.
- (*This is a provisional translation. The above date denotes the date of the issue of the original press release in Japanese.)
Back to Index