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Sato-Nixon Communique

San Clemente, 7th January, 1972


Prime Minister Sato and President Nixon, meeting in San Clemente on January 6 and 7, 1972 had wide-ranging and productive discussions that reflected the close, friendly relations between Japan and the United States. They covered the general international situation with particular emphasis on Asia including China, as well as bilateral relations between Japan and the United States.

The Prime Minister and the President recognized that in the changing world situation today, there are hopeful trends pointing toward a relaxation of tension, and they emphasized the need for further efforts to encourage such trends so as to promote lasting peace and stability. These efforts would involve close cooperation between the two governments and with other governments. They also recognized that the maintenance of cooperative relations between Japan and the United States is an indispensable factor for peace and stability in Asia, and accordingly they confirmed that the two Governments would continue to consult closely on their respective Asian policies.

The Prime Minister and the President, recalling the more than one hundred years of association between the two countries, emphasized the importance of U.S.-Japanese relations being founded on mutual trust and interdependence. In this connection, they highly valued the important role played by the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between Japan and the United States. The Prime Minister and the President discussed the problems relating to the return of Okinawa as contemplated in the Joint Communique of November 21, 1969. They were gratified that the Reversion Agreement signed on June 17, 1971 had received the support of the respective legislatures, and decided to effect the return of Okinawa to Japan on May 15, 1972. The President indicated the intention of the United States Government to confirm upon reversion that the assurances of the United States Government concerning nuclear weapons on Okinawa have been fully carried out. To this the Prime Minister expressed his deep appreciation. The Prime Minister explained to the President why he felt it necessary that, after reversion, the facilities and areas of the United States armed forces located in Okinawa be realigned or reduced to the extent possible, particularly those in areas densely populated or closely related to industrial development. The President replied that these factors would be taken fully into consideration in working out after reversion mutually acceptable adjustments in the facilities and areas consistent with the purpose of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security.

Recognising that the further strengthening of the already close economic ties between Japan and the United States was of vital importance to the overall relations between the two countries as well as to the expansion of the world economy as a whole, the Prime Minister and the President expressed their satisfaction that significant progress was being made, particularly since the meeting of the Japan-United States Committee on Trade and Economic Affairs last September, towards improvement of trade conditions and economic relations between the two countries.

They shared the expectation that the international currency realignment of last December would provide a firm basis on which to chart future development of the world economy, and stated their determination to exert renewed efforts, in combination with other countries, towards improved monetary arrangements, expanded world trade and assisting developing countries. In this connection they affirmed the importance of conditions that facilitate the flow of both public assistance and private capital.

The Prime Minister and the President reaffirmed the basic view that Japan and the United States, jointly ascribing to the principles of freedom and democracy, would cooperate closely with each other in all areas such as the political, cultural, economic, scientific and technological fields to achieve the common goals of maintaining and promoting peace and prosperity of the world and the well-being of their countrymen.

They agreed that the two Governments would expand cooperation in the fields of environment, of the peaceful uses of atomic energy and the peaceful exploration and use of outer space. They further agreed that experts of the two countries would examine concrete steps in this regard. They also agreed that steps be taken to increase cultural exchanges and in this regard the President welcomed the explanation given on the contemplated establishment of a Japanese cultural exchange program.

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