Home >  News >  Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary >  July 2012 >  Friday, July 27, 2012 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Friday, July 27, 2012 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Fujimura

  • An overview of the Cabinet meeting

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: I would like to give an overview of the Cabinet meeting. The meeting approved 16 general and other measures and also the promulgation of a law, a cabinet order, and personnel decisions. With regard to statements by ministers, Minister Motohisa Furukawa made a statement concerning the Annual Report on the Japanese Economy and Public Finance 2012, and the Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications made a statement concerning the consumer price index. I made a statement concerning the visit to Vietnam of His Imperial Highness Prince Akishino, and Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda made a statement concerning acting Ministers while Ministers in charge are away on an overseas visit.


  • Consideration on revising the PKO Act
  • London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games (the victories of Japanese women's and men's football tournaments)
  • The Senkaku Islands

REPORTER: The Government has decided to shelve the submission of a draft bill to the current session of the Diet for the revision of the Act on Cooperation for United Nations Peacekeeping Operations (PKO) and other operations (PKO Act), which would enable the so-called deployment in response to a call for protection. Can you explain the current status of the Government's considerations?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: I believe the Prime Minister has responded to questions about this at the Diet yesterday. The Government is reviewing the PKO Act, including whether or not to revise the act, with regard to all aspects of Japan's cooperation for United Nations (UN) PKO and other activities, including the scope of international peace cooperation operations, such as the deployment in response to a call for protection, and the authority of the Self-Defense Forces (SDF) to engage in these operations. At this time, I cannot discuss the specifics of the matters under consideration. We have not, however, reached the stage (of submitting the draft bill to the Diet).

REPORTER: Regarding this issue, I believe the Prime Minister until now had expressed quite a bit of enthusiasm toward the revision of the act, even in his responses to questions asked at the Diet. There is news that the Deputy Prime Minister is urging caution. Can you elaborate on this?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: I am aware that the party (Democratic Party of Japan) and the Cabinet have a variety of opinions. I do believe there are still items which should be reviewed regarding both the arrangements of the legal system and the arrangements of the operations. Also, considering the time which remains in the current ordinary session of parliament, my recognition is that the submission of the draft bill may be a little difficult during the current session. Nevertheless, we are determined to review the act until the end of this session.

REPORTER: Following the victory of the Japanese women's football team ahead of the opening of the Olympic Games, the Japanese men's football team also defeated Spain, one of the strongest teams, for a major historic win. Can you give any comments, if any, including whether you watched the tournaments?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: I did not watch the men's football tournament. I did watch parts of the women's football tournament. I feel Japan has gotten off to a truly excellent start with the men's national team winning 1-0 against a strong team like Spain, following the terrific news of the victory of the women's national team in their first tournament. I hope Japanese athletes will keep up the momentum and do well in all of the Olympic events without letting their guard down.

REPORTER: At yesterday's plenary session of the House of Representatives, Prime Minister Noda noted on the possibility of using the SDF to respond to unlawful conduct in relation to territorial issues, including in response to the Senkaku Islands issue. Is my understanding correct that the Government will be taking such responses moving forward?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: At yesterday's plenary session of the House of Representatives, a Diet member from the ruling party asked about the SDF's response should an unforeseen contingency occur in which there is unlawful entry into the Senkaku Islands. I believe the Prime Minister's comment was in response to this question. While I will not repeat the Prime Minister's response in detail, what the Prime Minister was driving at was that naturally, the Government as a whole will respond firmly should an unforeseen contingency occur in which there is an armed attack against Japan's inherent territory of the Senkaku Islands. Also, the Prime Minister was commenting on Japan's responses, including the use of the SDF as essentially a theoretical possibility, in emphasizing the fact that in general, it is essential to prevent such contingencies from occurring by preparing for crisis management from normal times, including diplomatic efforts. That is my understanding. At the same time, in responding to the question, the Prime Minister expressed clearly that he intends to deepen the mutually beneficial relationship based on common strategic interests with China. I believe this does not correspond with the media's allegations that Japan is trying to keep China in check and so forth.


Page Top

Related Link