United States - Japan Joint Statement on Defense Posture

February 8, 2012

Following is the text of a joint statement by the United States and Japan released on February 8, 2012, in Washington, D.C and Tokyo.

The United States and Japan are strongly committed to strengthening our robust security alliance, which is dedicated to the security of Japan and to the maintenance of peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region. We remain committed to mitigating the impact of U.S. forces on Okinawa, as well as to the construction of the Futenma Replacement Facility at the Camp Schwab Henoko-saki area and adjacent waters. We believe that the current Futenma Replacement Facility plan is the only viable way forward.

Both sides underscore that the development of Guam as a strategic hub, with an operational Marine Corps presence including Marines relocated from Okinawa, remains an essential part of the Alliance’s Asia-Pacific Strategy.

The United States has conducted a strategic review of its defense posture in Asia in order to achieve a more geographically distributed, operationally resilient and politically sustainable force structure in the region. Japan welcomes this initiative.

As part of this joint effort our two governments have started official discussions to adjust our current posture plans set forth in the Realignment Roadmap, in particular delinking both the movement of Marines to Guam and resulting land returns south of Kadena from progress on the Futenma Replacement Facility. We are also reviewing the unit composition and the number of Marines who will relocate to Guam and we continue to be committed to achieving an end-state Marine presence remaining on Okinawa in line with the Roadmap.

In the weeks and months ahead, our two governments will be working to address a number of issues associated with these adjustments. This joint effort advances the strategic objectives of the Alliance and reflects our shared vision for the maintenance of peace and security in the Asia-Pacific region.