Yuko Kishida, Japan PM’s Wife, to Visit U.S. at First Lady’s Invite

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Yuko Kishida

Yuko Kishida, wife of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, will visit the United States on her own at the invitation of U.S. first lady Jill Biden, it was learned Thursday.

The Sunday through Wednesday visit will be the first time for a Japanese prime minister’s wife to make the journey without the prime minister at the behest of a U.S. first lady.

The Japanese government will make a formal announcement soon.

During her stay, Kishida will meet Biden over lunch, aiming to further deepen the bilateral relationship through the spouses’ diplomacy before the upcoming G7 summit in Hiroshima in May.

In January, the prime minister made his first visit to Washington since assuming office and met U.S. President Joe Biden. At that time, Kishida refrained from accompanying her husband, as the U.S. first lady had just undergone surgery and was unable to attend any functions.

Jill Biden thus proposed the visit to Washington this time.

Only a few spouses of national leaders, including Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska, are said to have visited the United States to meet with Jill Biden at her invitation.