WASHINGTON, D.C. --President Donald Trump says the U.S. is committed to the security of Japan and all areas under its administrative control.
Trump's comments imply that a U.S.-Japan defense treaty covers disputed East China Sea islands, which are controlled by Japan but also claimed by China.
Trump was speaking after meeting Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the White House on Friday.
Trump said the allies have many shared interests, including freedom of navigation and defending against North Korea's nuclear and missile threat, which he called a "very high priority."
Trump's past calls for allies like Japan to pay more for their defense had sown doubts in Tokyo over the new U.S. administration's commitment to the alliance.
Trump said Friday he's committed to bringing ties "even closer."