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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Friday, July 11, 2014 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I would like to give an overview of the Cabinet meeting. The meeting approved two general measures, cabinet orders, and personnel decisions. With regard to statements by ministers, Minister Inada made a statement concerning the partial amendment of the Basic Policies on Public Service Reform.

In ministerial discussions following the Cabinet meeting, Minister Furuya made a statement about the damages incurred as a result of Typhoon No. 8.


  • The one-side cancellation of the SDF anniversary event in ROK
  • The issue regarding the structural changes to the Cabinet


REPORTER: A Self-Defense Force (SDF) anniversary event was scheduled to take place at a Lotte Hotel in the Republic of Korea (ROK), but the hotel refused to allow use of the venue on the day prior to the event due to anti-Japanese sentiment. Can you tell us what facts the Government has about this incident and the effects it will have on Japan-ROK relations? 

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First, concerning the SDF anniversary event organized by the Embassy of Japan in the ROK planned for the night of July 11, I have received a report that on the evening of July 10, the hotel where the event was scheduled to be held issued a one-sided cancellation notifying that the venue was no longer available for the event. I find it extremely regrettable that the hotel would take such an action on the day prior to an event regardless of the reason. The reception’s venue was changed to the ambassador’s official residence and will be held as scheduled. The Embassy of Japan in the ROK has protested strongly to the hotel.  

REPORTER: I have a related question. The Lotte Hotel has said that it decided to cancel the reservation in consideration of public sentiment. What is the reaction of the Government to this trend coming from within the ROK?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As I just said I find it extremely regrettable that this occurred. First the Government protested to the hotel because the problem lies with the hotel. I would like to fully convey our concerns to the Government of the ROK as well. 

REPORTER: I have another related question. The fact that these issues between Japan and the ROK have spread from the governmental level to private sector companies as well, as was the case with this incident, suggests that it will be very difficult to come up with measures to address the situation. Specifically, how will the Government resolve this? 

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: We would like to ask the ROK side to respond in a calm manner.

REPORTER: To follow up, the reason the hotel gave was anti-Japanese sentiment, but did they provide any further details regarding the reasoning, the background, or the sentiment?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I would like to ask that you direct your question to the hotel. We received notification of the decision in a one-sided manner on the evening prior to the event.


REPORTER: Today, according to parts of the media, Vice-President of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) Masahiko Komura stated in an interview that he expects the Minister of Defense to serve concurrently as the Minster in charge of National Security. The Prime Minister has also made statements about a Minister in charge of National Security. What are the administration’s thoughts about having another minister serve concurrently or the timing of when the position will be established?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I have not heard anything directly from the Prime Minister regarding any structural changes to the Cabinet. It was also written that Vice-President Komura said it would not make sense for him to decline a position that he was not offered. I believe the Prime Minister will consider the specifics of this matter, in the context of structural changes to the Cabinet, and other matters. I understand that the Prime Minister made a comment in overseas that he was not thinking about this matter at all at the present time.


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