Abe, Trump to go aboard MSDF ship

Courtesy of the Maritime Self-Defense Force

The Japanese destroyer Kaga, which U.S. President Donald Trump plans to board during his upcoming visit to Japan

Jiji Press TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump plan to board a Japanese destroyer together during Trump’s visit later this month, government sources said Wednesday.

The move is designed to underscore the strength of the Japan-U.S. alliance, the sources said. Trump is scheduled to visit Japan May 25-28 as the first state guest since the country’s era name changed from Heisei to Reiwa on May 1.

Japan plans to revamp two Izumo-class destroyers, the Izumo and the Kaga, into de facto aircraft carriers in stages to operate the Lockheed Martin F-35B stealth fighter. The Izumo-class is considered a symbol of Japan-U.S. defense cooperation.

With the Izumo on a long voyage to the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean until July, Abe and Trump will board the Kaga when they visit the U.S. Navy’s Yokosuka base in Kanagawa Prefecture on May 28. Trump is expected to board the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan as well.

During his stay in Japan, Trump is set to meet with the new Emperor, who took the throne on May 1, as well as hold a summit with Abe. The two leaders will also play golf and watch sumo matches.

There were plans for Abe and Trump to jointly board the Izumo during the U.S. president’s previous Japan visit in November 2017, but the plans did not materialize due to scheduling and other reasons.Speech

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