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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

June 7, 2016 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

1. Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga


2. Q&As
REPORTER: The U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue is taking place in Beijing. While the two sides appear to have agreed on the necessity of cooperating on global issues, such as measures to counter global warming, they seem to have a large divide in opinions on the South China Sea situation, human rights, and some other areas. Please explain the Japanese Government’s thoughts about discussion of these issues by the US and China.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY: I would like to refrain from commenting on the interactions of third-party countries as the Government. However, I think it is meaningful for the US and China to engage in constructive and frank talks amid heavy focus on China’s activities by the international community. Yet I do not believe the Government should comment on specific interactions. Nevertheless, problems related to the South China Sea directly affect regional peace and stability and are points of interest for the international community, including Japan. Japan has consistently supported the principle of rule of law in the South China Sea, and we intend to continue to call for a peaceful solution based on the rule of law and emphasize the importance of this approach.


REPORTER: Changing topics, I have a question about the plan to deploy the Ground Self-Defense Force’s Osprey aircraft at Saga Airport. Saga Prefecture Governor Yoshinori Yamaguchi commented at today’s regular press conference that he does not expect a determination from a review of whether or not to accept Osprey aircraft at Saga Airport at the June prefecture assembly session. Do you see a possible impact on the deployment plan after hearing this comment?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY: I have been told that State Minister of Defense Kenji Wakamiya recently visited Saga prefecture and explained the overall concept and future image for using the airport and facility layout plan requested by Governor Yamaguchi. Within this context, I think it is important for the Defense Minister to continue to carefully explain the plans to Saga Prefecture and local people.


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