An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

ArticleCS - Article View

News | June 1, 2023

Readout of Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III's Engagements with Japanese Leaders in Tokyo

DoD Immediate Release

WASHINGTON -- Pentagon Press Secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder provided the following readout:

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III met with his Japanese counterpart, Minister of Defense Hamada Yasukazu, and held separate discussions with Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, Minister for Foreign Affairs Hayashi Yoshimasa, and National Security Advisor Akiba Takeo, June 1 in Tokyo.

The purpose of his visit to Tokyo was to build on Alliance momentum in implementing outcomes of the January 2023 Security Consultative Committee (2+2) and the President’s May 2023 visit to Japan.

Secretary Austin underscored with Minister Hamada progress on modernizing alliance roles and missions, updating force posture, and networking with likeminded partners since the 2+2 Ministerial Meeting. Noting the alignment between U.S. and Japanese assessments of the regional threat landscape and a shared commitment to deepening multilateral cooperation, Secretary Austin applauded Japan’s resolve to bolster its defense through investments in advanced capabilities and cooperation with partners. In particular, the Secretary commended Minister Hamada on his stewardship of Japan’s decision to acquire counterstrike capabilities. The leaders discussed concerns about the regional security environment and the importance of increasing bilateral exercises and training in areas, including Japan’s Southwest Islands as discussed at the 2+2 meeting. They underscored the importance of bilateral work on U.S. force realignment efforts, and they committed to bolstering cooperation on advanced technologies, including hypersonic defense and autonomous systems.

The Secretary paid a courtesy call to Prime Minister Kishidaand Japan National Security Advisor Akiba, underscoring the U.S. commitment to the defense of Japan. Secretary Austin conveyed his congratulations on a highly successful Group of Seven meeting in Hiroshima, noting Japan’s continued critical role regionally and globally. Secretary Austin also expressed his appreciation for Japan’s leadership in opposing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, such as its commitments to providing defensive aid to Ukraine.

The Secretary reemphasized with Minister Hayashi the unwavering U.S. commitment to the defense of Japan under the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security, including U.S. extended deterrence backed by the full range of conventional and nuclear capabilities. Furthermore, the leaders discussed opportunities to expand trilateral cooperation with the Republic of Korea on a range of issues, including by expanding information sharing. The Secretary also celebrated Japan’s progress towards entry into force of Reciprocal Access Agreements with Australia and the UK and highlighted the value of the Alliance working together with a range of other partners from the Indo-Pacific and Europe.

Secretary Austin reaffirmed the historic progress that the leaders from both countries have made in strengthening the Alliance and enhancing peace, prosperity, and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.