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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Friday, June 15, 2012 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Fujimura

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: I would first like to give an overview of the Cabinet meeting. The meeting approved 20 general measures, as well as the promulgation of a treaty, a cabinet order and personnel decisions. With regard to statements by ministers, Minister Nakagawa made a statement concerning the fiscal 2011 Status of Aging and the Implementation of Measures Taken by the Government for an Aging Society and also about the fiscal 2012 Measures for an Aging Society. The Minister for Foreign Affairs made statements concerning the fiscal 2011 Report on Measures by the Government to Resolve the Abduction Issue and deal with other Human Rights Infringements by North Korean Authorities, and on Emergency Grant Aid for the Electricity Crisis in the Union of Myanmar. The Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism made statements concerning the fiscal 2012 White Paper on Greater Tokyo, fiscal 2012 White Paper on Land, and the fiscal 2012 White Paper on Tourism, as well as on personnel matters relating to the head of a special company. The Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare made a statement concerning the revision to the employment rate for persons with disabilities and other matters.

In ministerial discussions following the Cabinet meeting, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister of the Environment, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, and I each made statements concerning the initiative of the Government of Japan that is set to be announced at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20).

The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) is scheduled to take place from June 20 to 22, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The statements made in ministerial discussions concerned Japan's efforts towards this conference, and Cabinet ministers confirmed that the Government of Japan will set forth an initiative based on three specific areas, namely: showcasing to the world "FutureCities" [which will serve as model cases for future-oriented city development], promoting a transition to a global green economy, and promoting the mainstreaming of disaster prevention efforts in all countries around the world. Through this initiative Japan seeks to demonstrate strong leadership in these various areas. Furthermore, we aim to link these efforts through to global development for Japanese companies, including small and medium enterprises, which possess outstanding environmental and disaster prevention technologies.

I have one more item to report, concerning the revision of the Deliberate Evacuation Area in Iitate Village, Fukushima Prefecture. 1) Today a round robin meeting of the Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters decided to implement a revision of the Deliberate Evacuation Area in Iitate Village. 2) In specific terms, designations will be changed from the current "Deliberate Evacuation Area," which covers the entire land area of the village, and revised into three designations, depending on the volumes of radiation in each area: "areas in which evacuation orders are ready to be lifted," "areas in which residents are not permitted to live," and "areas where it is expected that residents will face difficulties in returning for a long time." 3) Based on coordination with Iitate Village, the Government has decided to implement these revisions as of midnight on Tuesday, July 17, in view of the time that will be required to provide explanations and raise awareness among the residents concerning the implementation and designation of the various areas. For further details, please direct your questions to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the METI Minister.


  • A CV-22 Osprey aircraft crash in Florida (in relation to consideration on deploying Osprey aircraft of the U.S. forces to Okinawa)

REPORTER: I have a question concerning Osprey transport aircraft. I believe that new information has become available since yesterday concerning the accident in Florida, and that you, the Minister of Defense and the Minister for Foreign Affairs remained after the end of the Cabinet meeting. Did you discuss this issue?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: With regard to your point concerning new information, there have not been any significant developments since yesterday. In the State of Florida, United States of America, an Osprey CV-22 aircraft crashed during training, resulting in five crew members being injured. Following the accident, on June 14, Japan time, Minister of Defense Morimoto issued a request to United States Ambassador to Japan John V. Roos, and also on June 14, U.S. time, Japanese Ambassador to the United States Ichiro Fujisaki issued a request to Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton B. Carter, both seeking the provision of detailed information concerning the accident at the earliest possible time. The U.S. side has indicated that as it acquires information concerning the accident it will share this information with the Government of Japan. It is therefore the case that the Government is requesting the U.S. Government to provide information as quickly as possible, and as I mentioned yesterday, until such information is provided the Government is seeking a temporary halt in procedures towards the deployment of the Osprey aircraft, including explanations to local residents. The short talk I had with the Minister of Defense and Minister for Foreign Affairs following the Cabinet meeting was for the purpose of confirming these matters.


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