U.S. President Barack Obama reiterated in Washington on Thursday that his administration will maintain strong relations with Japan, one of American allies in Asia.
"The partnership between the United States and Japan is one of tremendous importance. It's one of the cornerstones of our both security and economic well-being," Obama told reporters ahead of the Senate confirmation of U.S. ambassador to Japan John Roos.
"There is enormous respect between the people of Japan and the people of the United States. It is for that reason that my administration wants to get off on a strong footing diplomatically in our relationship," he said.
Japan has been a staunch ally of the United State for decades in international affairs, including the U.S.-sponsored Afghanistan war and Iraq war. Under a bilateral security alliance, about 50,000 U.S. troops are stationed in Japan.
(Xinhua News Agency August 7, 2009)