In Japan, Obama Has a Message for China: Back Off

U.S. President Barack Obama, inspects an honor guard during a welcoming ceremony at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, on April 24 Photograph by Yuya Shino/Pool via Bloomberg

President Obama today made clear which side he’s on in the territorial dispute between China and Japan. The world’s second and third-largest economies have been squabbling over a bunch of uninhabited islands in the East China Sea, and while Obama wants both sides to cool things down, he made sure to remind the Chinese that the U.S. and Japan are treaty allies. “What is a consistent part of the alliance is that the treaty covers all territory that is administered by Japan,” he said at a press conference in Tokyo today. “This is not a new position. It is a consistent one.”

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