Welcoming the Japanese PM to the Oval Office

President Obama and Prime Minister Taro Aso of Japan

The leaders of the world's two largest economies met in Washington yesterday morning, as Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso became the first foreign leader to meet with the President in the Oval Office.

"The alliance that we have is the cornerstone of security in East Asia," President Obama said before the meeting. "It's one that my administration wants to strengthen. We think that we have an opportunity to work together not only on issues related to the Pacific Rim but throughout the world, and Japan has been a great partner on issues ranging from climate change to Afghanistan."

Japan was also the first stop on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's first foreign trip, earlier this month.

President Obama in the Oval Office
White House photos 2/24/09 by Pete Souza
 
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