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Diplomatic Relations

Courtesy call on Prime Minister Shinzo Abe by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Monday, April 15, 2013

On April 15, commencing from 6:15 p.m. for around 30 minutes, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe received a courtesy call from H.E. Mr. Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO Secretary General, at the Prime Minister's Office. The overview of the meeting is as follows. Following the courtesy call, a signing ceremony for the Joint Political Declaration was held between Prime Minister Abe and Secretary General Rasmussen, along with a joint press announcement.

  1. Strengthening Japan-NATO relations

    Prime Minister Abe said Japan and NATO are partners that share fundamental values, and that with the Joint Political Declaration announced that evening as a starting point for a new cooperative relationship, he wants to strengthen dialogue and cooperation on new security fields, such as cyber defense and maritime security. The Prime Minister proposed setting up a joint study group in the fields of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. In response, Secretary General Rasmussen noted the importance of the partnership between Japan and NATO, which is based on shared values, and welcomed Prime Minister Abe's proposal. Additionally, he mentioned cyber security measures, counter terrorism, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief as being among the areas for potential cooperation between Japan and NATO.

  2. Regional issues

    Prime Minister Abe touched on the security environment in East Asia, including the situation in North Korea, and said he hopes to share with NATO the recognition that security in Asia and Europe are mutually and closely related. In response, Secretary General Rasmussen said he strongly condemns the escalation of tension by North Korea, including its decision to force through nuclear tests, and said he wants to cooperate closely with Japan in responding to such threats.

  3. Other matters

    Prime Minister Abe commented on support for Afghanistan by saying that Japan would steadily implement the commitments it made at the NATO Chicago Summit and the Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan last year. In response, Secretary General Rasmussen expressed strong praise and appreciation for the commitment expressed by Prime Minister Abe toward Japan's contribution to the development of Afghanistan and toward Japan's continued involvement following the withdrawal of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF).

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