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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

December 7, 2015 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga
A short while ago, President Obama of the United States stated in an address that the shooting incident that occurred in Los Angeles on December 2 (U.S. time) has been recognized as an act of terrorism. The Government of Japan would like to express heartfelt condolences for those who lost their lives and their families and extend sympathies to those who were injured. Japan would like to express its solidarity with the government and people of the United States. No act of terrorism can be justified for whatever reason or purpose and Japan strongly condemns all acts of terrorism. Japan will continue to engage in the fight against terrorism in close cooperation with the United States and the international community. The Government will engage in domestic anti-terrorism measures with a heightened sense of urgency and will make every effort to ensure the safety of Japanese nationals overseas.



REPORTER: I have a question about the statement that you read out at the beginning of the press conference. I believe that the terrorist attack in the United States is being investigated based on the view that it was a case of “home-grown terrorism.” The Government has recently established the Counter Terrorism Unit – Japan (CTU-J), and has announced that it will strengthen cooperation with other countries, including border control measures. How does the Government intend to respond to such cases of “home-grown” or “lone wolf” terrorist acts?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: To be frank, this term is one that is new to me, however, the Government naturally recognizes that it is necessary to work in cooperation with the international community to make every effort to build structures to contain terrorism. Although no such incident has occurred to date in Japan, there are people who claim to be in contact with ISIL-related persons and who express support for ISIL online. It was against this backdrop that a headquarters was also established to respond to international terrorism crimes. In light of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, the establishment of the CTU-J was also brought forward and is expected to start operations tomorrow. In any event, I believe that intelligence gathering and analytical capabilities are essential in order to prevent terrorism. Accordingly, the Government will continue to build structures that ensure thorough cooperation among relevant ministries and agencies in order to prevent terrorist incidents like the recent example of “home-grown” terrorism in the United States.


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