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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

May 24, 2017 (PM)

If you can not view the video,click here(Japanese Government Internet TV)
This video's audio is a provisional translation through live simultaneous interpretation.

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Q&As

(Abridged)

REPORTER: I would like to change the subject. I have a question related to the United Nations (UN) Committee Against Torture (CAT) over the issue of comfort women. In the written objection submitted by the Government of Japan, it is stated that the CAT did not offer Japan any opportunity to inform or express its position on the agreement between Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK) before the CAT recommended its revision. Within the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), some members have expressed the view that measures should be taken in light of the nature of the CAT that arrived at this conclusion dependent on unilateral claims. What kind of responses is the Government considering in order to prevent this situation from reoccurring? Will the Government be requesting the CAT or the UN to make improvements to the system?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Firstly, we issued a note explaining the comments by the Government of Japan regarding the concluding observations on the third to fifth periodic reports of the ROK to all members of the CAT, and had this note posted on the website of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). We will continue to seize opportunities to explain the relevant facts and the views of the Government of Japan to parties concerned with human rights treaties, including the CAT, and further enhance these efforts.

REPORTER: I have a related question. You stated that the English version of the Government’s objection is available on the website of OHCHR. You noted that the Government will seize various opportunities to explain its assertions. What, for example, will the Government take into consideration in providing its explanations?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: For example, the Government issued a note explaining its opinions regarding the concluding observations to all members of the CAT, and had this note posted on the website of OHCHR.

(Abridged)

REPORTER: I would like to change the subject. My question concerns the six Japanese men who are detained by Chinese authorities. At your press conference on May 22, you explained that the Government is providing appropriate supports to the men through Japanese diplomatic missions. Since then have there been any developments in the situation?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, it remains unchanged that the men are still detained. In any case, the Government is providing appropriate supports through our diplomatic missions and other channels from the standpoint of protecting Japanese nationals.

REPORTER: A related question. You stated that the situation remains unchanged. What requests is the Government specifically making to realize the release and return to Japan of these six nationals?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First, we are making firm requests to China at a variety of levels. We are requesting three items in particular. First, we have communicated our concerns over the fact that in cases of detentions of Japanese nationals by Chinese authorities considered harmful to its national security, it is not necessarily clear what behavior is regulated. Secondly, we are requesting that the rights of the detained Japanese nationals are appropriately protected and that they are treated fairly and equitably in the judicial process. Thirdly, we are requesting that Chinese authorities continue to take measures in accordance with the Agreement on Consular Relations between Japan and China, including allowing consular contact. The Government will continue to make these requests from the standpoint of protecting Japanese nationals, and provide appropriate supports to these Japanese nationals through our diplomatic missions and other channels continuously.

(Abridged)

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