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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

May 19, 2015 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


REPORTER: Today a special committee for security legislation will be established in the plenary session of the House of Representatives. Could you please explain once again what stance the Government will be taking in this special committee and what kind of discussions are expected with opposition parties?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Firstly, as the Prime Minister himself has stated, securing the lives and peaceful daily lives of the Japanese people is the greatest responsibility of the Government. The Government believes that it is important to develop legislation that will enable seamless responses to any situations. The Government will humbly and carefully explain the necessity of this legislation in the Diet and will seek the understanding of the people of Japan. We also request the opposition parties to provide constructive opinions in the course of deliberations.


REPORTER: I have a question concerning Japan-Republic of Korea (ROK) relations. United States Secretary of State John Kerry is currently visiting China and the ROK, where he has had a meeting with President Park Geun-hye and other representatives. In a press conference following the meeting he mentioned the necessity for direct dialogue between Japan and the ROK. The situation as it currently stands is that a Japan-ROK summit meeting has yet to be realized, so how does the Government appraise these recent comments?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I believe that it is of the utmost importance for Japan, the United States and the ROK to cooperate closely for the sake of regional peace and prosperity, including on issues relating to North Korea. The Government of Japan is keen to further advance trilateral cooperation. At the same time, with regard to relations with the ROK, although there are difficult issues that exist arising from the fact that we are neighboring countries, Japan’s door is always open for dialogue and the Government believes that such dialogue should be engaged in from a broad perspective and without any conditions attached. Our door is always open.


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