Defense

September 17, 2012

Panetta addresses Osprey, territory disputes in Japan visit

On a day that he began in Japan and is finishing in China, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta responded to questions on the U.S. deployment of V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft to Okinawa and the ongoing dispute between China and Japan over the Senkaku Islands.

The Osprey has been a controversial topic since the aircraft was first shipped to Japan in July, and thousands of Japanese have in recent weeks protested the aircraft’s use there. Panetta said Sept. 17 during a news conference with Japanese Defense Minister Satoshi Morimoto that the two countries have established a joint committee to resolve any questions about the Osprey’s safety.

The committee has made “very positive progress,” the secretary said. “What we will do is rely on their agreement … to proceed,” he added.

Panetta said he and other defense leaders will “do everything possible to try to assure the people involved here that the operations are safe.” He added he looks forward to moving forward with Osprey operations on Okinawa soon.

During the news conference and while visiting troops at Yokota Air Base, Panetta responded to questions about the dispute over the Senkaku Islands – known in China as the Diaoyu Islands. Reports from China say anti-Japanese protests involving the issue have broken out in several major cities in recent days.

The United States, in all cases of disputed territory involving Pacific waters, urges “calm and restraint on all sides,” the secretary said.

“United States policy with regards to these islands is well known, and obviously, we stand by our treaty obligations,” Panetta said. “But the United States, as a matter of policy, does not take a position with regards to competing sovereignty claims.”

It’s important that both sides in any dispute pursue diplomatic means to resolve differences, he added.

“These approaches have to based on clear principles – principles that relate to international rules and regulations and that have been consistently enunciated,” he said at the news conference. “It is in everybody’s interest for Japan and China to maintain good relations and to find a way to avoid further escalation.”

Later, Panetta expanded on this theme in response to a service member’s question during his talk with troops at Yokota Air Base immediately before he left for Beijing.

“The reason this is happening is because a lot of these countries look to these islands, look to the resources that are out there, look to offshore drilling, look to energy resources,” he said. “And so it’s going to become more competitive between countries as they face this issue.”

The U.S. stance, the secretary repeated, is to urge competing claimants to develop a process that will help them resolve such claims peacefully and according to international norms. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations has developed a code of conduct that can help to guide that development, he added.

“There is a danger that through provocation of one kind or another, we could have a blowup in any one of these issues,” he said. “And so it is the responsibility of those countries involved to try to resolve these issues peacefully.”

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Army photograph

Fifth generation Army tank cartridge reports loudly for duty

Army photograph A new tank cartridge was recently tested at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. Pictured here are: (from left) Kent Evans, TRADOC Capability Manager – Armored Brigade Combat Team; Kevin Mulligan, Armament Researc...
 
 

Acquisition community works to improve tradecraft

Everything the defense acquisition community is doing now is being done to improve its tradecraft, Katrina G. McFarland, the assistant secretary of defense for acquisition said April 16. McFarland made the comments at the National Defense Industrial Associations National Logistics Forum. Improving tradecraft is something DOD would want to do in the best of times,...
 
 
B1a

B-1B software upgrade to ensure future warfighting capabilities

Air Force photograph by Ethan Wagner An Edwards B-1B Lancer takes off on April 1, 2014, to begin testing its new Sustainment Block 16A software upgrades. The SB 16A software will work in conjunction with the long-range bomberĂ­...
 

 

45th Space Wing launches NRO Satellite on board Atlas V

The 45th Space Wing successfully launched a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Space Launch Complex 41, Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif., at 1:45 p.m. April 10 carrying a classified national security payload. The payload was designed and built by the National Reconnaissance Office. “I am proud of the persistence and focus of the...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Carlin Leslie

Smarter spending for Air Force acquisitions

Air Force photograph by SSgt. Carlin Leslie Maj. Gen. Wendy Masiello briefs attendees April 16, 2014, on how today’s budget environment is driving change for both government and industry as part of the Air Force Associati...
 
 
DOD photograph by Marine Corps Sgt. Aaron Hostutler

U.S., Poland defense leaders find new areas for cooperation

DOD photograph by Marine Corps Sgt. Aaron Hostutler Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel hosts a press briefing with Poland’s Minister of National Defense Tomasz Siemoniak at the Pentagon, April 17, 2014. Amid deep concerns about...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>