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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

August 4, 2016 (AM)

If you can not view the video,click here(Japanese Government Internet TV)
Simultaneous interpretation services for this video are provided by a third party.

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: On August 5, Prime Minister Abe will arrive in Hiroshima, and on the 6th, the Prime Minister will attend the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony. In addition, on the 9th, the Prime Minister will arrive in Nagasaki and attend the Nagasaki Peace Memorial Ceremony.


REPORTER: With regard to North Korea’s launch of a ballistic missile yesterday, an emergency meeting of the United Nations (UN) Security Council was held at the request of Japan, the United States, and the Republic of Korea (ROK). Despite the fact that the act was a clear violation of Security Council resolutions, the Security Council did not release any statement condemning North Korea. What will Japan specifically be requesting to the Security Council? In addition, China has reacted cautiously. What is your view in this regard?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, on the morning of the 4th JST, informal consultations of the Security Council were held in response to a request made by Japan in cooperation with the United States and the ROK. At the meeting, the UN Secretariat provided a briefing of the recent launch, and on this basis, exchanges of views took place among the members. I would like to refrain from speculating about the future. Having said that, it is important that the Security Council expresses its will regarding North Korea’s provocations in a timely and appropriate manner, and Japan will continue to coordinate closely with other Security Council members in steadily dealing with the situation.

REPORTER: I have a related question. Following this meeting of the Security Council, the Chinese Ambassador once again urged caution in issuing a statement condemning North Korea. What are your thoughts regarding this?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First, with respect to the statements made at the Security Council consultations, during the consultations, on the part of Japan, Japanese Ambassador to the UN Bessho stated as follows. Despite condemnation and warnings repeatedly expressed by Japan and other countries concerned as well as the international community, North Korea went ahead with the recent launch. This constitutes a clear violation of relevant Security Council resolutions and is totally unacceptable. In particular, the ballistic missile landed within Japan’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ), which poses a serious threat to the security of Japan and is an intolerable outrageous act. Japan takes this very seriously. Japan made such statements during the Security Council consultations. As these were closed-door consultations, I would like to refrain from disclosing the details of the statements made by other countries. Members including the ROK condemned North Korea’s recent launch of a ballistic missile.

REPORTER: A related question. What do you think about the fact that the Security Council failed to adopt a statement condemning North Korea?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: That is of course because there were countries that were opposed. On the whole an overwhelming majority of the members affirmed the statements made by Japan. However, as a matter of fact there are these countries.

REPORTER: Despite the nature of the missile launch, with the missile landing within Japan’s EEZ and the Prime Minister stating that it was an outrageous act, there are countries that express opposition within the Security Council. What is your view regarding this?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: It goes to show how the international community is clam and unswayed by emotions. Japan is making its best diplomatic efforts. It is very regrettable that as a matter of fact there are these countries.


REPORTER: I would like to ask about a different matter. Today marks the official start of the third re-reshuffled Abe Cabinet. Can you once again explain which issues the Abe Cabinet will be addressing and how?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As I have often stated, the Abe Cabinet has been running the government so far based on a fundamental stance of moving this country forward under the leadership of politicians, driven by a strong motivation to carry out reforms by making clear the parameters of what we should be doing and making progress towards these goals. In particular, two major matters were at issue in the recent House of Councillors election. One of them was the Abenomics economic policy, and the other was the points of conflict between the Government and ruling parties and opposition parties that wish to abolish the Legislation for Peace and Security. We consider that we received a public mandate regarding these issues. In order to realize these two, the ruling parties will be committed to realizing a society in which all citizens are dynamically engaged. For example, in the area of economics, we will make sizable investments in the future as was recently announced, compile supplementary budgets, and implement bold measures to realize the growth strategy in areas such as tourism and agriculture. This remains unchanged.

REPORTER: I have one more question regarding a different matter. The International Olympic Committee has decided that the additional events at the Tokyo Olympic Games would include baseball, softball, and karate. Can you please share your comments?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As these events have many fans in Japan, I believe this is welcome news for all Japanese people.


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