Wed, February 18, 2009
World > Asia-Pacific > Hillary Clinton kicks off Asian tour

U.S. secretary of state meets Japan's opposition leader on bilateral ties

2009-02-17 14:51:33 GMT2009-02-17 22:51:33 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

Ichiro Ozawa (R), president of Japan's Democratic Party, shakes hands with visiting U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prior to their meeting in Tokyo, Japan, Feb. 17, 2009.(Xinhua/Kyodo)

Ichiro Ozawa (R), president of Japan's Democratic Party, shares a laugh with visiting U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prior to their meeting in Tokyo, Japan, Feb. 17, 2009. (Xinhua/Kyodo)

TOKYO, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- Visiting U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met late Tuesday with opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) leader Ichiro Ozawa.

The meeting came at a time when the support rating for Japanese Prime Minster Taro Aso's cabinet has sank further below the critical 30 percent mark to less than 20 percent and there is a greater possibility that the DPJ could win the helm of state from the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) Party in the next lower house election.

During their talks at a Tokyo hotel, Clinton and Ozawa agreed to make greater efforts to promote bilateral relations.

The top U.S. diplomat also held talks with Prime Minister Taro Aso shortly before meeting with Ozawa.

Earlier Tuesday Clinton and his Japanese counterpart Hirofumi Nakasone agreed to cement bilateral alliance to tackle various global issues and signed a new pact on the relocation of U.S. Marines from Okinawa to Guam.

The U.S. secretary of state arrived here Monday for a three-day visit on her inaugural overseas trip. She is scheduled to conclude her first leg of the four-nation Asian tour on Wednesday before traveling to Indonesia, South Korea and China.

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