Fri. May 24th, 2024

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to address Congress in joint meeting

By 37ci3 Apr11,2024

WASHINGTON – Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is set to address a joint session of Congress on Thursday, a day after his government. improved his country’s security alliance with the United States and ahead of the trilateral leaders’ summit with the United States and the Philippines.

Kishida is set to address both the House and Senate at 11 a.m., marking the second time a Japanese prime minister will formally address Congress. The first was Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in 2015, and the last address of a foreign leader to lawmakers was Israel President Isaac Herzog in July 2023.

Thursday’s meeting will be chaired by Vice President Kamala Harris.

Congressional leaders invited Kishida to speak to both chambers in early March, which Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., said in a statement as part of an effort to “lay the foundation for cooperation for years to come.”

“Japan is a close ally — vital to both our national and economic security,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. “This visit will continue to deepen diplomatic and security relations between our countries and build on the strength of decades of cooperation.”

The trip draws attention to Republicans’ opposition to foreign aid to countries including Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan, particularly in the House of Representatives. Before the invitation was extended to Kishida, the Republican and Democratic leaders of the House Foreign Affairs Committee urged Johnson to formally ask the Japanese leader to speak to Congress, saying in a letter that it would “help Congress support this critical alliance and help members.” “He understands the importance of Congress for the economic and strategic interests of the United States.”

After the address, Vice President and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken will have lunch with Kishida at the State Department.

In the second half of the day, Kishida will attend the US-Japan-Philippines tripartite summit at the White House and meet both President Joe Biden and Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

On Wednesday, Biden and Kishida announced plans to upgrade the US military command structure in Japan, which is home to about 54,000 US personnel. The two countries will also establish a military-industrial council to explore the types of weapons they could jointly produce.

White House He gave a state banquet for the leader of Japan Among the guests that night were former President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton, as well as Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Apple CEO Tim Cook.

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By 37ci3

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