Obama Makes Concession on Marine Base – Tokyo, Japan

In an effort to mend fences with Japan, President Obama agreed on Friday to reopen talks on the relocation of the Okinawa base. President Obama announced that he would establish a high-level working group on the contentious issue of the continuing presence of a Marine base in Okinawa, speaking at a news conference just a few hours after he touched down in Tokyo to begin his first presidential trip to Asia.

His decision to, at least in theory, reconsider Japanese concerns about an agreement to move the current Marine base to another area on Okinawa, represents a concession. Less than a month ago, Defense Secretary Robert Gates appeared to have shut the door on reopening the issue, which was agreed to in 2006.

Source: NY Times
Photo: Stephen Crowley/The New York Times