Carter Hosts Japanese Defense Official at Pentagon
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Jul. 30, 2013 Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter hosted Japanese Parliamentary Senior Vice Minister of Defense Akinori Eto yesterday at the Pentagon.
In a statement summarizing the meeting, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said Carter expressed admiration for the strong work the United States and Japan have accomplished together in support of the bilateral alliance.
Carter also emphasized the steadfast nature of the U.S. commitment to the Asia-Pacific rebalance, Little said, and noted the significant role of the U.S.-Japan alliance in maintaining regional security and stability.
“The two leaders discussed the strategic environment and the possibility of a review of the 1997 U.S.-Japan Defense Guidelines in order to meet emerging opportunities and challenges,” Little said. “They agreed that strengthening cooperation with other regional partners, including the Republic of Korea, is an important element of promoting peace and stability.”
Eto updated Carter on the status of Japan's National Defense Program Guidelines, including the content of the interim report released July 26, the press secretary said.
Carter and Eto agreed to make steady progress on the realignment of U.S. Forces Japan, including the relocation of Marine Corps Air Station Futenma to Henoko and of U.S. Marines from Okinawa to Guam, Little said. They also discussed progress being made with respect to the joint strike fighter program and agreed to stay in close touch to build upon the strong bilateral relationship between their two countries, he added.