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Kan, Obama talk; agree to maintain Okinawa base agreement

Date Posted: 2010-06-07

The President of the United States and the incoming Prime Minister of Japan are in accord; the two countries will stand by an agreement on relocating Futenma Marine Corps Air Station to northern Okinawa within the next four years.

Naoto Kan and Barack Obama talked by telephone on Sunday. Obama took the lead in proposing the two countries proceed as scheduled with relocating Futenma as agreed in a joint statement late last month. In turn, Kan assured the American President his administration will deal with the base relocation issue in a way consistent with the agreement.

The May decisions by then-Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama’s administration, called for moving Futenma from crowded Ginowan City to the sparsely populated Henoko district in northern Okinawa. That decision broke Hatoyama’s ability to govern and led to his resignation last week after only nine months in office.

Obama congratulated Kan on being elected Prime Minister during their 15-minute call. The U.S. President and Kan agreed to meet in Canada June 25th or 26th during a Group of eight Summit.

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