Noda may meet with Obama in May

Kyodo

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is expected to visit the United States for talks with President Barack Obama during the Golden Week holidays in May, Foreign Minister Koichiro Genba indicated Tuesday.

“I believe the prime minister’s trip to the United States will take place before the Group of Eight summit” on May 18 and 19, Genba told the Upper House Budget Committee.

The G-8 summit will be held at Camp David in Maryland.

Noda, who became prime minister last September, had hoped to visit Washington for talks with Obama ahead of the start of the current Diet session in January. There has been no formal summit between the Japanese and U.S. leaders in Washington since the Democratic Party of Japan, now headed by Noda, swept to power in September 2009.

The last time a prime minister held a formal meeting in Washington with Obama was in February 2009, when Taro Aso became the first foreign leader invited to the White House after Obama’s inauguration.