US - Japan

Chronology from Jul 2005 to Oct 2005

: Senate Foreign Relations Committee holds hearings on U.S. relations with Japan. In testimony, Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill calls the U.S.-Japan alliance “a model” for other countries. Richard Lawless, deputy assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific Affairs, applauds Japan’s progress in security policy but calls the changes “quite modest” in relation to its ability to contribute to international security and its global interests.

: House Ways and Means Committee holds hearings on Japan.

: U.S. and Japanese defense officials begin senior working-level talks on realignment of U.S. forces in Japan. They break up after two days without agreement.

: Fukuoka High Court upholds ruling rejecting a demand by Okinawa residents that a former U.S. Marine Futemma Air Station commander stop nighttime and early morning flights and compensate them for damage from noise.

: Secretary Rice and FM Machimura meet in NYC at UN and announce creation of U.S.-Japan Strategic Development Alliance and a set of common development principles governing its operations.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda says the government will submit a bill in the upcoming Diet session to extend offshore refueling assistance to the U.S.-led antiterrorism campaign in Afghanistan.

: Japan-U.S. Joint Committee agrees to transfer artillery live-fire exercises at a training facility in Range 4 at Camp Hansen in Okinawa to a new facility to be constructed at Japan’s expense further from local residents. The government aims to relocate the exercises to the new facility at an early date.

: In phone call, President Bush congratulates Koizumi on his election victory and Koizumi expresses condolences for the victims of Hurricane Katrina and says Japan is ready to extend support.

: PM Koizumi’s Liberal Democratic Party wins majority of seats (296 of 480) in the Lower House and coalition partner New Komeito wins 31 seats.

: Japan agrees to release 7.3 million barrels from oil reserves in a concerted action by the International Energy Agency to help stabilize the world oil market in the wake of Katrina.

: FM Machimura places phone call to Secretary Rice and conveys sympathies over the loss of life and damage inflicted by Katrina; he says Japan is prepared to contribute funding and emergency material support.

: U.S. Embassy in Japan expresses appreciation for the donation of $200,000 through the American Red Cross and Japanese offer of tents, blankets and power generators amounting to $300,000 in the aftermath of Katrina.

: As a countermeasure against the Byrd Amendment, which violates WTO rules, Japan levies a uniform 15 percent additional tariff on 15 products, including ball bearings and steel products, the first time Japan invokes retaliatory tariffs. 

: PM Koizumi offers condolences to U.S. after Hurricane Katrina. 

: A governmental nuclear research and development institute begins work to ship soil containing uranium ore from Yurihama, Tottori Prefecture, to the U.S. for disposal, but the work was suspended almost immediately due to an accident. 

: U.S. Aegis guided-missile destroyer Curtis Wilbur, deployed in the Sea of Japan to guard against North Korean ballistic missiles, arrives at Niigata port. 

: Japan and U.S. chief delegates to the six-nation nuclear talks confirm that it is important that North Korea abandon all nuclear programs. 

: Head of research panel under Japan’s Food Safety Commission says he will present in September a draft report on terms for removing Japan’s ban on beef imports from Canada and the U.S. 

: Kadena Mayor Miyagi Tokujitsu files protest with U.S. Kadena Air Base in Okinawa Prefecture after clouds of smoke and sulfuric gas drift over neighborhoods following explosions that were part of a military drill. Aug. 25, 2005: The ratio of Americans who see Japan as a dependable partner rises to record high, report Foreign Ministry polls conducted in 2004 and 2005. 

: Japan participates in Exercise Deep Saber 2005, a PSI exercise hosted by Singapore that involved 12 other nations, with 2,000 naval, coast guard and other service members, 10 vessels and six aircraft.  Aug. 19, 2005: U.S. livestock industry group opposes the government’s plan to ease a four-year import ban on Japanese beef because of mad cow disease and urges Japan to lift its ban on U.S. beef simultaneously with the proposed step. 

: The USS Kitty Hawk carrier battle group, along with marines and air assets, begin JASEX exercise in Japanese waters, the highest-level joint exercise held outside the U.S. to improve cooperation and interoperability and simulate operations that include the entire spectrum of warfare.

: Cabinet approves Japanese government’s plan to impose a 15 percent tariff on 15 U.S. ball bearing and steel products from Sept. 1, in response to a U.S. antidumping law. It is Japan’s first such measure against any trading partner.

: Okinawa International University launches balloon to protest U.S. Marine Corps helicopter crash in August 2004, which damaged the walls of its main building.

: Japan Defense Agency chief Ohno says Sept. 11 general election will force delay in compiling interim report with the U.S. on realigning U.S. forces in Japan.

: PM Koizumi dissolves House of Representatives and calls general election for Sept. 11 after House of Councilors voted down government-sponsored postal privatization bills.

: The U.S. and China agree to work together to oppose a plan to expand the UN Security Council put forward by Japan, India, Germany and Brazil.

: Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry says Japan will slap 15 percent levies on U.S. steel imports starting Sept. 1 in retaliation for protection measures.

: U.S. military helicopter based at Atsugi makes emergency landing near a crowded beach in Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture, due to engine troubles shortly before noon; crewmembers were safe and no injuries were reported among people at the beach.

: FM Machimura visits Washington to hold talks with Secretary Rice, but fails to get Rice’s support for G-4 UN reform proposal.

: First phase of the fourth round of Six-Party Talks are held in Beijing; six countries reiterate the goal of the talks is denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula through peaceful means and agree to produce a common document. The talks then enter a three-week recess.

: Space shuttle Discovery lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, carrying seven astronauts, including Japan’s Noguchi Soichi.

: Japan and U.S. agree on licensed production of ground-based Patriot Advanced Capability 3 (PAC-3) interceptor missiles in Japan as part of the missile defense system.

: 10,000 people protest U.S. Army exercises using live ammunition in the town of Kin, Okinawa Prefecture.

: Farm Minister Shimamura Yoshinobu and Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns meet to discuss lifting Japan’s import ban on U.S. beef.

: Secretary Rice meets PM Koizumi Junichiro; they agree to achieve specific results on North Korea’s nuclear programs during Six-Party Talks. They also discuss terrorism, UN reform, and realignment of U.S. forces in Japan.

: FM Machimua Nobutaka meets Secretary Rice; they agree to compile interim report on realignment of U.S. forces in Japan around Sept., to ensure that there is concrete progress in upcoming Six-Party Talks, and they discuss U.S. beef imports and Japanese abduction issues.

: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice emphasizes the planned resumption of six-way talks on North Korea’s nuclear programs was a result of diplomatic efforts by all involved, but fails to mention Japan by name.

: Okinawa Gov. Inamine Keiichi meets with head of U.S. forces to protest alleged molestation of a 10-year-old girl by a U.S. airman.

Date Range