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    Japanese minister of defense honors American veterans at National Cemetery of the Pacific

    Japanese minister of defense honors American veterans at National Cemetery of the Pacific

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class Cynthia Clark | Japanese Minister of Defense Itsunori Onodera pays his respects to the late Hawaiian...... read more read more

    HONOLULU, HI, UNITED STATES

    07.01.2013

    Story by Petty Officer 1st Class Cynthia Clark 

    DMA Pacific - Hawaii Media Bureau   

    HONOLULU, Hawaii - Japanese Minister of Defense Itsunori Onodera honored American veterans and war dead at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, Monday, July 1. Minister Onodera laid a wreath in honor of those lost at the cemetery, as well as visited the gravesite of the late Sen. Daniel Inouye.

    This is just one of many events Minister Onodera will participate in during his time here in Hawaii. Onodera is also scheduled to meet with U.S. Pacific Command leadership over the next few days.

    “The Japanese have a very close association with us,” said Gene Castagnetti, director of the cemetery. “As a former adversary we have progressed over 50 plus years, so that we are great allies, this can be seen in the numerous visits we’ve had by Japanese dignitaries that started with the Emperor Akihito in 1994.”

    According to Castagnetti, it is visits like these that are important in keeping the diplomatic relations between our two countries strong.

    “He set an example of reconciliation and healing between the United States and Japan,” Castagnetti continued. “It shows we have a strong commitment with each other.”

    In addition to honoring American veterans, Minister Onodera also honored the late Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye, who received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in World War II, and was the first Japanese-American elected to both Congress and the U.S. Senate.

    “Minister Onodera shared with me he met our late senator on three different occasions,” Castagnetti said. “The Senator showed great, great compassion to build those diplomatic bridges and was very instrumental in making sure Japan and America became strong allies we are today.”

    Minister Onodera is also scheduled to visit with Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III, Commander, U.S. Pacific Command and his staff; as well as Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet Adm. Cecil D. Haney during his visit to Hawaii.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 07.01.2013
    Date Posted: 07.03.2013 00:09
    Story ID: 109662
    Location: HONOLULU, HI, US 

    Web Views: 110
    Downloads: 0

    PUBLIC DOMAIN