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Director-general of MOFA North American bureau afraid of Okinawa reporters?

Within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the director-general of the North American Affairs Bureau, director-general of the Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, and other senior officials in key posts meet with the press for informal regular gatherings every week.

 

But reporters have been voicing discontent because Takeo Mori, director-general of the North American bureau, has thus far held no meetings. He assumed the post last September and previously served as minister at the Japanese Embassy in Washington and deputy director-general of economic affairs bureau.

 

The Japan-U.S. relationship has many issues that need to be addressed, such as scandals involving U.S. military personnel, the review of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement, and the presidential election. The press club has asked Mori to hold regular gatherings on several occasions, but he just ignores their requests.

 

“Meetings with the press in the past were attended by reporters from the Okinawa Times and the Ryukyu Shimpo, who often ask the director-general of North American bureau tough questions,” said a reporter with a national newspaper outlet. “He might be afraid of that.”

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