Japan-United States of America Relations

September 27, 2023
Prime Minister Kishida shaking hands with Admiral John C. Aquilino, Commander, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command Prime Minister Kishida receiving a courtesy call (Photo: Cabinet Public Affairs Office)

On September 27, 2023, commencing at 2:10 pm, for approximately 15 minutes, Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio, received a courtesy call from Admiral John C. Aquilino, Commander, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, during his visit to Japan. The overview of the courtesy call is as follows.

  1. At the outset, Prime Minister Kishida welcomed the visit of Admiral Aquilino to Japan, and expressed his gratitude for the contribution of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command and the U.S. Forces Japan, which play a significant role in maintaining peace and stability in this region, as the security environment surrounding Japan is becoming increasingly severe. He also stated that based on Japan’s National Security Strategy formulated at the end of last year, Japan will promote efforts for the peace and stability in the region and beyond, through fundamentally reinforcing its own defense capabilities, further strengthening the Japan-U.S. Alliance, and making efforts to realize a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific”.
  2. In response, Admiral Aquilino stated that the importance of the Japan-U.S. Alliance has never been higher than ever amidst an increasingly severe security environment, and they also stated that they would like to demonstrate the unwavering U.S. commitment to the Indo-Pacific region to achieve a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific."
  3. The two sides exchanged their views on Japan-U.S. security and defense cooperation to strengthen Alliance deterrence and response capabilities in light of the increasingly severe security environment in the region, including North Korea's intensified nuclear and missile activities and China's unilateral change to the status quo by force and such attempts. They also affirmed the continued close coordination between Japan and the U.S.
  4. The two sides reaffirmed the importance of steadily implementing the realignment of U.S. forces in Japan from the perspective of mitigating the impact on local communities such as Okinawa, while advancing the above efforts for strengthening Alliance deterrence and response capabilities. Prime Minister Kishida also requested the safe operation of the U.S. forces in Japan with consideration to the local communities.

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