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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

March 25, 2015 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


  • The incident regarding the crash of the German airliner
  • The freedom of the press


REPORTER: I have a question regarding the crash of the German airliner. Can you share with us the latest information concerning the safety of the Japanese nationals and news from the crash site, if any?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As of now, the situation is the same as what I last stated.


REPORTER: With regard to the cause of the accident, it seems that an increasing number of experts are ruling out terrorism. Do you have any comments in this regard?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: We have not made a final confirmation, but we are aware that that is the prevailing view. However, we understand that a final announcement has not been made yet. I believe the cause is being investigated from a variety of angles.


REPORTER: My question is in connection with this morning’s meeting of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Representatives. During the meeting, Minister for Foreign Affairs Kishida stated that Japan must fully deal with the situation in relation to the Republic of Korea’s (ROK) prolonged ban against the previous Sankei Shimbun bureau chief from leaving the country. As the Minister subsequently stated, will the Japanese Government be making appeals to the United Nations (UN) and at other forums? 

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, at the recent Japan-ROK foreign ministers’ meeting as well, Minister Kishida reiterated Japan’s concerns and strongly urged the ROK to address this matter appropriately. In addition, we perceive that through UN resolutions and other efforts, there is a shared recognition among countries regarding the importance of the freedom of the press. Furthermore, on the occasion of a UN Human Rights Council meeting held earlier this month, Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Uto appealed, in fact, that Japan supports freedom of the press as a base of democracy and considers that journalists should not be punished arbitrarily for articles which they have written. Japan will continue to steadily make its assertions at such UN forums when a suitable opportunity arises.      

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