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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

December 4, 2015 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga


This morning, following the Cabinet meeting, a meeting of the Headquarters for Promotion of Measures Against Transnational Organized Crime and Other Relative Issues and International Terrorism was held. In this meeting new counter-terrorism measures based on the recent terrorism-related situation were decided, whereby in order to strengthen and accelerate the Government’s existing counter-terrorism measures, which were formulated in May this year following the incident in which Japanese nationals were murdered in Syria, intelligence gathering and analytical capabilities will be enhanced through the establishment of the Counter Terrorism Unit – Japan (CTU-J). This decision will be reported to the Ministerial Meeting Concerning Measures Against Crime, which is scheduled to be held on December 8, and the CTU-J will start operations on the same day.

The Government of the Philippines has long extended its invitation for Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress to visit the Philippines. On the occasion next year of the 60th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between Japan and the Philippines and in view of the relations of friendship and goodwill that exist between Japan and the Philippines, the Government has decided to formally request that Their Majesties make a State Visit to the Philippines. The details of Their Majesties’ schedule will be decided in consultation with the Government of the Philippines, but Their Majesties are scheduled to depart Tokyo on January 26 on a five-day visit. The decision on Their Majesties’ visit was made in the Cabinet meeting today. A statement by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Their Majesties’ visit to the Philippines was also approved.


REPORTER: I have a question concerning the CTU-J, the establishment of which you have just announced. You have just stated that the CTU-J will be established today and start operations on December 8. What are your expectations for how this unit will grow and develop?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As I just noted, in view of the severity of the current terrorism-related situation, the Headquarters decided to enhance various measures with regard to six items, including strengthening of intelligence gathering and analytical capabilities, enhancing border control measures, implementation of patrols and surveillance at important facilities, and strengthening counter-terrorism capabilities. In any event, the intelligence that is gathered will be shared by the CTU-J and ministries and agencies, working under an All Japan framework as we work to respond robustly to terrorism. The CTU-J will be located in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and will be staffed by officials from ministries and agencies involved in the information community. The unit will conduct intelligence gathering based on intelligence that is on a basis of interest to the Prime Minister’s Office.


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