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New U.S. envoy says commitment to Japan's security "ironclad"

New U.S. Ambassador to Japan William Hagerty made clear on
Wednesday he will focus on maintaining the "ironclad" security and
economic alliance between Tokyo and Washington.

In a video message released by the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo ahead
of his arrival, Hagerty said "there is no bilateral relationship more
important to the United States than our alliance with Japan. Our
commitment to the security of Japan and our economic partnership is
ironclad."

Citing his three-year stay in Japan more than two decades ago,
Hagerty called Japan his second home, and said, "As ambassador, I'm
committed to bringing our two countries even closer together."

Hagerty built ties with Japan through his posting to Tokyo from
the late 1980s to early 1990s while working for the management
consulting firm Boston Consulting Group.

He is scheduled to be accompanied to Japan by his wife and
children, as well as his mother. After securing Senate confirmation
last month, Hagerty, a native of Tennessee, said he will depart the
United States for Tokyo with his family in "the middle part of
August."

He ended his message by saying in Japanese, "Tanoshimi ni shite
imasu," which is roughly translated as, "I am looking forward."

The new ambassador will succeed Caroline Kennedy, who served
under President Barack Obama's administration before leaving Tokyo in
January. (Aug. 16)


U.S. Ambassador to Japan William Hagerty