Secretary of State Kerry to visit Asia

Associated Press + More

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State John Kerry is heading to Asia next week to discuss U.S.-Japan security issues, trade and other matters important in the region.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Thursday that Kerry will be in Tokyo on Oct. 2-3 with Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel for talks about strengthening the U.S.-Japan alliance.

On. Oct. 4, Kerry will travel on to Bali, Indonesia, to lead the State Department's delegation to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation ministerial meeting and join President Barack Obama for APEC-related meetings.

Prior to the Tokyo meetings, Hagel will stop in Seoul to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the signing of the mutual defense treaty between the U.S. and South Korea. He also will be on hand for the military change of command in South Korea, as Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, former director of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, takes over command of U.S. forces in Korea. He replaces Gen. James Thurman.

APEC is the premier forum for facilitating economic growth, cooperation, trade and investment in the Asia-Pacific region.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.