by Staff Writers
Tokyo (AFP) Oct 26, 2013
Top leaders from Japan and Pacific island nations will hold a summit in a city near the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant in 2015, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said Saturday.
Kishida made the announcement at a news conference after a meeting of ministers from Japan and the 16-member Pacific Islands Forum in Tokyo to prepare for the triennial summit.
The 2015 meeting will be held in Iwaki, a provincial city located about 40 kilometres (25 miles) from the plant.
A massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 ravaged Japan's northeast coast and sparked a meltdown crisis at the plant which has released radiation into the environment.
"Holding the Pacific island summit in the disaster-hit area will provide a chance to tell the world how our country is making a strong recovery from the east Japan earthquake," Takumi Nemoto, Japan's minister for reconstruction, said in a statement.
Japan has hosted the summit six times since 1977 to discuss maritime order, resource management and new ways to cooperate in trade and investment at a time when China is boosting its presence in the Pacific.
At last year's summit, held in Okinawa, Japan pledged aid worth up to $500 million over three years to Pacific island nations, of which Kishida said about 90 percent had been extended.
The Pacific Islands Forum groups Australia, the Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, the Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
Like Japan, Australia and New Zealand are taking part as aid givers.
The summit is seen as one prong of Tokyo's charm offensive to garner support in its bid for a permanent seat on the UN Security Council.
Water News - Science, Technology and Politics
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|