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Bush invites new Japanese PM to visit
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US President George W. Bush invited on Wednesday Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda to visit the US "at an early date" and expected Japan to continue supporting US-led efforts in Afghanistan, the White House said.


Bush, who telephoned Fukuda to congratulate him on taking office, attached great importance to "the friendship and the relationship the US and Japan have," US national security spokesman Gordon Johndroe said in a statement.


"The president thanked the prime minister for Japan's significant contribution to the global war on terror and noted that he hoped the refueling operations for Afghanistan will be renewed by the Diet," he said.


Bush also discussed the importance of the six-party talks and reiterated his commitment to dealing with the issue of Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea.


In response, Johndroe said, "The prime minister thanked the president for his comments that Japan is well qualified to be a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council."


(Xinhua News Agency September 27, 2007)

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