U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with senior Japanese leaders on Sunday to express sympathy with Japan 's people and support for its economy after last month's devastating earthquake and tsunami. That came after she reiterated the Obama administration's support for a free-trade deal with South Korea in meetings earlier Sunday with senior officials in Seoul. Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko greet U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prior to tea at the Imperial Palace Residence. On the second stop of a weekend trip to Asia, Ms. Clinton announced in Tokyo a public-private partnership to help Japan 's economic prospects and sounded a note of optimism about the Japanese business community's ability to rebound in the wake of the 9.0-magnitude quake on March 11. The disaster has seriously disrupted supply chains and electricity supplies in Japan and threatens to knock the wind out of a budding economic recovery.