Japanese PM Shinzo Abe meets Trump
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday met the United States president-elect Donald Trump and later expressed that the Trump is a leader in whom he can have great confidence.
The Japanese Prime Minister was seeking reassurances over the future of US-Japan security and trade relations. Abe, who became the first world leader to meet with Trump since the November election, also decribed the meeting as “really, really cordial” but offered few details of their discussion.
Addressing a press conference, Abe said: “I do believe that without confidence between the two nations (the) alliance would never function in the future and as an outcome of today’s discussion I am convinced Mr. Trump is a leader with whom I can have great confidence in.”
Abe opined the meeting renewed his conviction that he would be able to establish a relationship of confidence with Trump.
The Japanese leader met Trump in New York, where the incoming president is working on setting up an administration after his surprise election victory last week that has injected new uncertainty into old US alliances. The Trump transition team provided no readout of the meeting.
Trump’s campaign rhetoric caused consternation in many world capitals, including Tokyo. The president-elect has said he would demand that allies such as Japan and South Korea contribute more to the cost of basing US troops in their countries.
“I conveyed my basic views on various issues to Mr. Trump but with regard to more of the specifics or details, because of the fact that Mr. Trump has not assumed the office as the president of the United States or today’s discussion was an unofficial discussion, I’d like to refrain from touching on details,” Abe said. He also said they agreed to meet again for a deeper discussion on a wider range of issues.
Both Japan and South Korea already pay considerable sums to support the US bases, and note that it’s also in America’s strategic interest to deploy troops in the region.