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Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada announced Tuesday he has set up a third-party committee to review the ministry’s probe into alleged secret diplomatic pacts between Japan and the U.S., including one that allows entry of U.S. ships and aircraft carrying nuclear arms into Japan.

Okada told reporters in the afternoon that the panel, made up of six academics, would hold its first meeting Friday and aim to submit a final report by mid-January over the internal probe, which is almost finished but whose results have not been disclosed to the public.

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