Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has arrived in Hawaii to recognize the Japanese attacks on Pearl Harbor.

Abe arrived on Tuesday for the historic visit. He will be the first Japanese prime minister to visit the memorial that honors sailors and Marines killed in the 1941 attack.

The memorial will be closed to the public Tuesday when he visits with US President Barack Obama, who is vacationing in Hawaii with his family.

Japan's former leader Shigeru Yoshida went to Pearl Harbor six years after the country's World War II surrender. Yoshida arrived at Pearl Harbor in 1951, shortly after requesting a courtesy visit to the office of Adm Arthur W R Radford, commander of the US Pacific fleet. The office overlooked Pearl Harbor, offering a direct view of the attack site.