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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

September 11, 2015 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga



Following today’s Cabinet meeting, the Ministerial Council on the Response to Infectious Diseases that Pose a Threat to Global Society, which is chaired by the Prime Minister, convened a meeting. Since March of last year, infectious diseases such as the Ebola virus disease and MERS have posed significant threats to the international community. In addition, the Leaders’ Declaration from the recent G7 Summit in Schloss Elmau includes text stating that the G7 partners will coordinate, including with international organizations, to address epidemics. Also here in Japan, it has become an urgent task to strengthen its relevant responses. For this reason, this Ministerial Council will convene meetings to decide on a basic direction for effectively and comprehensively promoting responses to infectious diseases that pose a threat to the global society, which will be done in close coordination with relevant administrative agencies. Furthermore, the Response Promotion Team for Infectious Diseases that Pose a Threat to Global Society was established under the Ministerial Council, for the purpose of ensuring close coordination among the relevant ministries and agencies. Additionally, the Global Epidemic Response Coordination Office was established within the Cabinet Secretariat to operate the Ministerial Council and to advance whole-of-government responses.



REPORTER: In its magazine that was published online, the extremist group, the Islamic State (IS), has called on followers to attack Japan’s overseas diplomatic establishments. Can you please tell us the facts and the Japanese Government’s responses?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I am aware that such an article was published. In response to this announcement, Japan is taking thorough steps to ensure there is no security oversight at our overseas diplomatic establishments, all the while working with our partner countries. Simultaneously, we have instructed the tightening of security.


REPORTER: My question is in regard to IS. Does your instruction to tighten security apply to all of Japan’s overseas diplomatic establishments?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The instruction was issued to all overseas diplomatic establishments, including the diplomatic establishments in the three countries that were mentioned. In parallel with this, we are also alerting Japanese nationals overseas.


REPORTER: There are some news reports stating that a Japan-Russia foreign ministers’ meeting will take place later this month, or that a Japan-Russia summit meeting will take place on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly meeting. What is the status of these considerations?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, there is no truth to that. Minister for Foreign Affairs Kishida’s visit to Russia has not yet been decided. Nothing has been decided yet with regard to either President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Japan or a summit meeting.

REPORTER: I have a related question. It is in connection to Minister for Foreign Affairs Kishida’s visit to Russia. In terms of recent developments, the Russian side has made a series of visits to the Northern Territories, including Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s visit to the Northern Territories. Is it your view that Minister for Foreign Affairs Kishida’s visit to Russia will take place in this kind of context?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: This matter is being examined while making a comprehensive judgment based on a variety of factors.


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