Welcoming Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the White House with a hug, President Trump said he wants to bring the post-World War II alliance with Japan “even closer.” President Trump offered Japan assurances Friday that mutual defense agreements cover the disputed Senkaku Islands, claimed by China as the Diaoyus. Trump signed off on a joint statement with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that reaffirms America’s security guarantee.
Diverting from Trump’s stance that the Trans-Pacific Partnership is bad for America, Abe stressed the importance of a “free and fair common set of rules” for trade among the worlds’ most dynamic economies. “That was the purpose of TPP. That importance has not changed,” Abe said through an interpreter, though both leaders held out the possibility of a future bilateral, U.S.-Japanese deal.
After a working lunch on economic issues, the two leaders boarded Air Force One with their wives for a trip to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida. Trump and Abe are scheduled to play golf Saturday.