Japan, one of the postwar era’s strongest anti-nuclear voices, missed an opportunity at the nuclear summit that ended here on Tuesday to translate its commitment to disarmament into a premier spot on an emerging global agenda. Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama was overshadowed by those who came to Washington with specific ideas about how to shore up the global commitment to nonproliferation.
Although the issue of nuclear nonproliferation was identified early on as a priority after Japan’s new government took office in September, Mr. Hatoyama, who was seated next to President Obama over dinner, used his one-on-one time to discuss the relocation of the Futenma Marine Air Station on Okinawa, a thorn in the bilateral relationship.
Read the rest of the story: Japan’s Missed Opportunity
A summit aimed at thwarting nuclear terrorism began in Washington with a working dinner Monday, with host U.S. President Barack Obama hoping to bring to fruition his goal of securing nuclear materials from theft or diversion within four years.
In addition to Obama, Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama and representatives from 45 other nations are taking part in the two-day Nuclear Security Summit, which Obama proposed to host during his landmark speech in Prague last April.
Following full-fledged discussions Tuesday, the meeting will close in the evening with a joint communique expected to press for international efforts to strengthen safeguards against the theft and purchase of nuclear materials or technologies by terrorists.
During his speech at the one-and-a-half-hour banquet, Hatoyama, who has said he wants to fulfill his responsibility as leader of the only nation to have experienced atomic bombings, proposed establishing a nuclear security support center in Japan and conducting a $6.1 million support project with the International Atomic Energy Agency.
Read the rest of the story: Nuclear summit opens, Hatoyama plays up Japan’s role on nuke security