US, Japan share a strong partnership: Hillary Clinton

Clinton has termed America`s alliance with Japan as the cornerstone of its strategic engagement throughout the Asia- Pacific.

Last Updated: Dec 20, 2011, 08:41 AM IST

Washington: US Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton has termed America`s alliance with Japan as the
cornerstone of its strategic engagement throughout the Asia-
Pacific which has helped safeguard the regional security.

"Japan and the United States share a strong and vibrant
partnership. Our alliance helps safeguard regional security
and is the cornerstone of US strategic engagement throughout
the Asia-Pacific," Hillary Clinton told reporters at a joint press
conference with the visiting Japanese Foreign Minister
Koichiro Gemba.

This was Gemba`s first bilateral trip to the US in this

The two leaders exchanged views on a wide range of
bilateral and global issues, including North Korea, Burma,
China and Afghanistan.

"We also exchanged views on global issues, including
pressing challenges of Iran and Afghanistan, and confirmed
that we will closely consult and cooperate with each other,"
the Japanese Foreign Minister said.

"During our discussion on Iran, specifically in relation
to the National Defence Authorization Act, which targets the
Central Bank of Iran, I conveyed my view that there is a
danger of causing damage to the entire global economy if the
imports of Iranian crude oil stop," he said.

"Let me emphasize that it is the solid foundation of the
Japan-US relations that enable us to coordinate, cooperate and
consult with each other closely.

Gemba said that he and Hillary
Clinton have reaffirmed that both
the countries would continue to implement the realignment of
US forces stationed in Japan, including relocation of Futenma
Air Station and relocation of the US Marine Corps from Okinawa
to Guam in accordance with the Japan-US agreement.

"We also confirmed that with regard to the US budget for
the relocation of the Marine Corps to Guam, the commitment of
the US government to the implementation of the 2006 Japan-US
road map is unchanged. I emphasized the importance of moving
forward to lessen burden on Okinawa, and asked for cooperation
from the United States," he said.

"On the economy, from the perspective of incorporating
the economic growth of the Asia-Pacific region, which is a
growth engine of the global economy, Japan decided to enter
into consultations with the countries concerned who are
participating in the TPP negotiations," Gemba said.