News / USA

US, Japan to Create Partnership to Rebuild After Disaster

Announcement made Sunday during US Secretary of State Clinton's visit to Tokyo

The crippled Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power plant is seen in Fukushima Prefecture in this undated handout photo released by Tokyo Electric Power Co, 14 Apr 2011
The crippled Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power plant is seen in Fukushima Prefecture in this undated handout photo released by Tokyo Electric Power Co, 14 Apr 2011

Japan and the United States have agreed to create a public-private partnership, under Tokyo's guidance, to help rebuild communities devastated by last month's magnitude 9.0 earthquake and resulting tsunami.

The announcement was made during a visit Sunday to Japan's capital by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Businesses, civil society groups and public officials from the United States and Japan are to cooperate to speed the recovery of the region hit hardest by Japan's worst-ever natural disaster in modern times.

As a series of perceptible aftershocks continued to rattle Tokyo, Clinton met Sunday with Japan's foreign minister, had tea with the emperor and empress, and then held talks with Prime Minister Naoto Kan.

After a meeting with her Japanese counterpart, Clinton noted how the international community is giving back to a country that has consistently provided substantial aid when disaster has struck elsewhere.

"Japan is one of the world’s most generous nations. And the dozens of countries that have sent support in the past five weeks are honoring Japan’s legacy of caring for others," said Clinton.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Japanese Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto, Tokyo, 17 Apr. 2011
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Japanese Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto, Tokyo, 17 Apr. 2011

Japanese Foreign Minister Takeaki Matsumoto told the U.S. secretary of state the assistance Washington has provided, including that from American military forces stationed in the country, is greatly appreciated.

U.S. forces mobilized 20,000 personnel and nearly 200 aircraft and vessels for relief activities in Japan.

The U.S. government has also sent experts from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Energy Department to help Japan deal with the emergency at the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant.

Japan has faced criticism at home and abroad for delayed and opaque information about what has been happening at the damaged facility.

The foreign minister pledged the Japanese government would be more forthcoming about the unresolved nuclear crisis, saying Sunday, "...we would like to disclose the information about the situation, as we should, to the international community."

Prime Minister Kan, already on shaky political ground before the March 11 earthquake, is facing increasing calls to step down because of a perceived lack of leadership in response to the nuclear disaster.

The Japanese government and the Tokyo Electric Power Company are struggling to resolve the crisis at the nuclear plant. The cooling systems for the Fukushima reactors were destroyed by the tsunami. Since then the facility has leaked radiation into the air and sea, forcing the evacuation of tens of thousands of households and destroying the livelihoods of farmers and fishermen.

The utility on Sunday dampened expectations about a quick solution. The company's chairman, Tsunehisa Katsumata, told reporters it hopes to bring the situation under control in six to nine months. He explained the initial critical step, which will take about three months, is to steadily bring down the level of leaking radiation. Only after that, he said, can efforts begin to prepare the plant's four troubled reactors for a cold shutdown.


Steve Herman

A veteran journalist, Steve Herman is VOA's Southeast Asia Bureau Chief and Correspondent, based in Bangkok.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs