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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

April 15, 2016 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

1. Opening remarks by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga


2. Q&As

REPORTER: Did Prime Minister Shinzo Abe give any instructions to ministers regarding the earthquake at the Cabinet Meeting or Ministerial Meeting?
CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: At the Ministerial Meeting, Prime Minister Abe expressed his condolences for the people who died in the earthquake and offered his prayers for those who were injured, and he also instructed related ministers and agencies to put their utmost efforts in cooperating to prevent secondary damages. Furthermore, many people are taking refuge, and he called for quick provision of blankets and other necessary goods to the area. Prime Minister Abe issued instructions to the Fire and Disaster Management Agency, the Self Defense Forces, and the National Police Agency, which are currently conducting earnest searches, as well as to related ministers to take further measures.

REPORTER: This is a related question. The Governor of Kumamoto Prefecture requested early designation as a severe disaster site. What is the state of review at this point and the outlook?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The Government has instructed related ministries and agencies to promptly ascertain the extent of damages and move as quickly as possible with processes linked to the designation.


Regarding nuclear power facilities, intensity readings were 4 for the Sendai Nuclear Power Plant and 2 for the Genkai Nuclear Power Plant, and I have not received any reports of abnormalities. There was also mention of the Government’s provision of information on the nuclear plants. I seriously accept the opinions that the information provided on the Nuclear Regulatory Authority’s web page and Twitter site was inadequate and have instructed the Authority to be sure that it quickly provides accurate information. Following my instructions, the Nuclear Regulatory Authority reported that it has already begun information provision. I have also issued orders to other nuclear-related departments to respond similarly.


REPORTER: Changing topic, I have a question about the North Korea situation. Information from the Republic of Korea indicates that North Korea failed in an attempt to launch a Musudan mid-range ballistic missile. Please explain the information that the Government has on the situation.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The Government is constantly collecting and then analyzing intelligence on developments related to North Korea’s missiles with utmost interest. While this is our stance, I would like to refrain from commenting on specific content or analysis. In any case, Japan has not confirmed arrival of a missile or other projectile, and The Government is not aware of the occurrence of an incident that directly affects Japan’s security. The Government is fully prepared to protect the lives and property of the Japanese people in all circumstances, and has the Self Defence Forces in a necessary stance from this perspective. I do not want to discuss the specific details.


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