US - Japan
Chronology from May 2016 to Aug 2016
: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says that the Senate will not vote on TPP before Obama leaves office.
: Abe Cabinet approves a 4.11 trillion yen ($39.5 billion) supplementary budget, which includes 431.7 billion yen ($4.2 billion) intended to strengthen Japan’s agricultural sector ahead of TPP ratification.
: Japan, Korea, and China hold a trilateral foreign ministers meeting in Tokyo.
: North Korea launches a ballistic missile from a submarine, which travels over 300 miles and lands in the Sea of Japan.
: Government of Japan announces that Prime Minister Abe will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sept. 2 in Vladivostok, Russia.
: Japan Coast Guard releases video showing Chinese intrusions into waters near the Senkaku Islands.
: SEALDS, one of Japan’s leading liberal youth political groups, announces that it has disbanded. The group is most known for helping to organize mass protests last summer against Prime Minister Abe’s security legislation.
: Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton gives a speech saying, “I oppose [TPP] now, I’ll oppose it after the election, and I’ll oppose it as president.”
: State Department spokeswoman notes the unusual Chinese behavior near the Senkaku Islands in a press briefing, and reiterates that the islands fall within the scope of Article 5 of the US-Japan security treaty.
: Japan Coast Guard rescues six members of a Chinese fishing boat near the Senkaku Islands after it collided with a Greek cargo ship and sank.
: Emperor Akihito releases a video message expressing concern about how his advanced age may be affecting the performance of his public duties. The speech is widely interpreted as the emperor intends to abdicate his position in the coming years.
: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump criticizes US defense of Japan as one-sided, saying that if the US is attacked, Japan would “sit at home and watch Sony TV.”
: Group of 230 Chinese fishing boats and 6 coast guard vessels enter the contiguous zone in waters near the Senkaku Islands.
: Legal battle resumes in court between the central and Okinawa governments over the relocation of US Marine Corps Air Station Futenma. A ruling in the case is set for Sept. 16.
: Speaker of the House Paul Ryan says the Obama administration still has a lot to do if it hopes to secure the necessary votes to ratify TPP in the lame-duck session of Congress.
: Prime Minister Abe reshuffles his Cabinet.
: Tokyo elects Yuriko Koike as city’s first female governor.
: Democratic Party (DP) leader Okada Katsuya announces he will not seek reelection in September, saying the party needs a fresh face to take on the Abe’s administration.
: Fourth US-Japan Bilateral Cyber Dialogue is held in Washington.
: Democratic National Convention is held in Philadelphia.
: Secretary of State John Kerry, Minister for Foreign Affairs Kishida, and Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop meet in Vientiane, Laos for the sixth ministerial meeting of the Trilateral Strategic Dialogue (TSD).
: Former Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) member Hirano Tatsuo joins the LDP, giving the LDP a majority in the Upper House for the first time in 27 years.
: Republican National Convention is held in Cleveland.
: China’s Foreign Ministry expresses strong opposition to the tribunal’s ruling on the South China Sea, and reiterates that it will not abide by the case.
: Foreign Minister Kishida Fumio releases a statement on the tribunal’s South China Sea award, saying that Japan “has consistently advocated the importance of the rule of law.” He urges both China and the Philippines to comply with the ruling.
: UNCLOS Arbitral Tribunal issues an award on the dispute between the Philippines and China over claimed rights and activity in the South China Sea. The tribunal concludes “there was no legal basis for China to claim historic rights to resources within the sea areas falling within the ‘nine-dash line’.”
: Japan and the US hold a bilateral Extended Deterrence Dialogue in Tokyo.
: Election is held for Japan’s Upper House. The ruling LDP/Komeito coalition gains 10 seats, bringing their total to 146, a clear majority of the total 242 seats.
: Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders publishes an op-ed arguing that the Democratic Party should include an amendment rejecting TPP in its platform at the national convention.
: Special Advisor for Children’s Issues, Ambassador Susan Jacobs, travels to Tokyo to participate in the “Asia Pacific Symposium on the 1980 Hague Convention.”
: Assistant Secretary for Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance Frank Rose travels to Japan to co-chair the third plenary meeting of the International Partnership for Nuclear Disarmament Verification (IPNDV).
: Official campaign period begins for the Upper House election on July 10.
: Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs Daniel Russel and Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Biswal travel to Tokyo to co-lead the US delegation for the US-Japan-India Trilateral Dialogue and Ninth US-India Consultations on East Asia.
: The 27th Plenary Session of the US-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange (CULCON) convenes in Tokyo.
: Tokyo Gov. Masuzoe Yoichi announces resignation over expenses scandal.
: US, Japan, and Korea hold a trilateral dialogue in Washington, DC.
: Chinese PLA Navy vessel enters Japanese contiguous waters near the Senkakus.
: Secretary Carter and Defense Minister Nakatani meet on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue to discuss regional security challenges and opportunities. South Korean Minister of National Defense Han Min-koo joins them later for a trilateral meeting.
: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, clarifying earlier comments, says that he does not want Japan to go nuclear but to instead pay more for US military support.
: Prime Minister Abe announces that he will delay a scheduled sales tax increase (from 8 percent to 10 percent) from April 2017 to October 2019.
: President Obama becomes the first sitting US president to visit Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, the site of the US atomic bombing on August 6, 1945. He gives a speech.
: Japan hosts the 42nd G7 Summit in Ise-Shima.
: President Obama and Prime Minister Abe Shinzo meet on the sidelines of the G7 Summit. Obama expresses condolences for the crime committed by a US forces member in Okinawa. The two leaders discuss global economy, TPP, and North Korea.
: President Obama travels to Japan to attend the G7 Summit and visit Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.
: US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter speaks by phone with Japanese Minister of Defense Nakatani Gen to convey his sadness and regret over the murder of a young woman in Okinawa. He pledges that the Department of Defense will cooperate with the investigation.
: US and Japan hold the fourth annual Nonproliferation Dialogue in Tokyo.