Blinken, Austin Planning Japan Visit in Mid-March

Politics

Tokyo, March 4 (Jiji Press)--U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin are planning to visit Japan starting on March 15, multiple sources familiar with relations between the two countries said Thursday.

Blinken and Austin will be the first U.S. cabinet ministers to visit Japan since U.S. President Joe Biden took office in January.

The two U.S. officials are set to meet Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi in a security meeting, as well as hold talks with Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

The two sides are expected to reaffirm their commitment to strengthen the Japan-U.S. alliance to counter China's assertiveness in the East China Sea and the South China Sea.

The ministers are also expected to discuss North Korea's denuclearization as well as its abductions of Japanese citizens. Also likely on the agenda will be defense cooperation in space and cyberspace.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press