Japan's PM-elect, Obama talk on Futenma base issue

Updated: 2010-06-06 09:44
Large Medium Small

TOKYO - Japan's Prime Minister Elect Naoto Kan held talks early Sunday with US President Barack Obama on the Futenma base issue, local media reported.

Related readings:
Japan's PM-elect, Obama talk on Futenma base issue Japan, US agree to relocate Futenma base in Okinawa
Japan's PM-elect, Obama talk on Futenma base issue Japanese PM: Decision on Futenma to be made soon

Kan said that he will strive to fulfill the Japan-US pact on the relocation of the US Marine Futenma base within Okinawa Prefecture.  

"I want to make strenuous efforts" on the relocation of the base, Kan was quoted as saying.

Obama, for his part, said that he wants to cement the bilateral partnership for peace and stability worldwide.

After being elected as Japan's 94th prime minister Friday, Kan told reporters he will stick to the Japan-US agreement reached under Yukio Hatoyama on May 28 over the relocation of the US Marine Corps' Futenma Air Station in Okinawa.

Obama called Kan on Saturday to congratulate him on his election and pledge to work together on issues including the Democratic People's Republic of Korea and Iran, the White House said.

"They emphasized the importance they each place on the US-Japan Alliance," it said.

Support rate for Kan stands at 60%

Public opinion polls showed Sunday that around 60 percent of voters have high hopes for Japan's Prime Minister-elect Naoto Kan.

According to a survey conducted by The Asahi Shimbun, 59 percent of respondents said they have high hopes for Kan, compared with 33 percent for those who do not.

Separately, The Mainichi Shimbun poll produced similar results, with 63 percent saying they have positive expectations for Kan, compared with 37 percent for those who do not do so.

With regards to which party they will vote for, the Asahi survey showed that 33 percent respondents will vote for Kan's ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) in the upper house election scheduled for July, up by 5 percentage points from the previous poll conducted shortly after Hatoyama's announcement of resignation.

While The Mainichi survey said that 34 percent will vote for the DPJ in the upper house election, up by 12 percentage points from the previous poll survey conducted in late May before Hatoyama's resignation announcement.

In the latest poll conducted by Kyodo News on Friday and Saturday, support rate for the DPJ rose to 36.1 percent, up by 15. 6 percentage points from the previous survey in late May.

Kan was elected as Japan's new prime minister in the two-chamber Diet two days after Hatoyama's resignation. He is expected to formally assume the premiership Tuesday, when his cabinet will also be launched.