National / Politics

Japan's top diplomat meets with former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz

Kyodo

Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi met Monday with George Shultz, former U.S. secretary of state under President Ronald Reagan, ahead of the 60th anniversary of the signing of the revised Japan-U.S. security treaty.

Motegi thanked Shultz for playing a “distinguished role” in strengthening the alliance between the countries, and congratulated him on celebrating his 99th birthday in December, handing him a letter from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Shultz reminisced about former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, who died at age 101 in November, and Abe’s father, former Foreign Minister Shintaro Abe, the Foreign Ministry said.

The meeting was held in San Francisco, where Motegi was visiting for talks Tuesday with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha.

Shultz fought as a Marine in the Pacific theater of World War II, and served in several Cabinet positions under President Richard Nixon before being appointed secretary of state by Reagan in 1982.

Earlier Monday, Motegi made an offering of flowers at a cemetery in the nearby town of Colma that is the final resting place for more than 5,000 people of Japanese descent.

The cemetery also has a monument commemorating three crewmen from the Kanrin Maru, a ship that carried Japanese statesmen to San Francisco in 1860.