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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Wednesday, March 19, 2014 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


  •  The issues related to Japan-ROK relations
  •  The issues related to the lawsuit filed in China on forced labor during World War II


REPORTER: (Abridged)The press reports in the ROK suggest that Japan started to engage in considerations with the ROK towards the establishment of foreign ministry director general-level talks to discuss matters of concern, including the comfort women issue. Could you share your thoughts on this?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I have yet to receive any report on this matter.

REPORTER: In the plenary session of the House of Representatives the Prime Minister expressed a desire to realize a summit meeting with the ROK. In addition the ROK has responded positively to a certain degree to the Prime Minister’s statement that the Kono Statement will not be revised. What is the Government’s analysis of the environment relating to the realization of a summit meeting?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Since the inauguration of the Abe administration I have constantly stated our basic stance in these press conferences, which is that the Government will succeed the Kono Statement. Furthermore, based on the view that Japan and the ROK are extremely important neighboring nations which truly share the same values, the Government will continue to explain our stance and views diligently, carefully and persistently. The Government believes that it is important for the leaders of our countries to meet.

REPORTER: Has the Government confirmed that a court in Beijing has decided to take up the lawsuit filed in China by a group of former workers who were forcibly recruited?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: In the press conference this morning I based my statement on the premise that the press reports with regard to this issue were true. The Government has sought confirmation from China with regard to this matter, but has yet to receive a response. At the same time the Government is working together with Mitsubishi Materials Corporation on this matter, and I understand that the company has also not received any response.

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