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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

November 15, 2016 (PM)

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]


REPORTER: I would like to ask about the risks associated with the assignment of the duty of “kaketsuke-keigo” (coming to the aid of geographically distant unit or personnel under attack). At this morning’s press conference, you stated that efforts would be made in all dimensions to reduce the risks. Do you view that the assignment of the duty of kaketsuke-keigo will lead to an increase of risks from before?  

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, the duties of the Self-Defense Forces (SDF) have always involved risks. For example, the SDF is often mobilized for natural disaster operations in peacetime because the work is beyond what can be handled by the police and the fire department alone. Therefore, their duties come with risks. The Government is using the various means at its disposal to reduce the risks facing the SDF. It is true that the new duties that will be assigned pursuant to the Legislation for Peace and Security including kaketsuke-keigo has risks similar to previous duties. However, as long as an unforeseen situation was to occur involving Japanese nationals, the SDF will be assigned the substantial duty of kaketsuke-keigo and the necessary authority. If the SDF is fully prepared for such situations based on sufficient advance trainings, this will contribute not only to the safety of Japanese nationals but also to reducing the risks facing the SDF when they carry out its duties. In any case, efforts will be made to reduce the risks through extensive preparations and measures to secure safety, based on adequate education and training and accurate risk analysis according to the local situation.  

REPORTER: I have a related question. Also in your morning press conference, you stated that preparations would be made based on an accurate analysis of the risks according to the local situation. Moments ago, you made a similar remark. How will you obtain an accurate analysis of the risks? For example, will this be something like gathering a wide range of information that will include information exchanges with other countries?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: We will carry out accurate analyses of the risks, for example, by comprehensively considering the reports sent from personnel dispatched to the area as well as information from the Japanese Embassy, relevant countries, and the United Nations. On this basis, we will undertake detailed preparations and measures to secure safety, and thereby, lower the risks in this regard. 


REPORTER: I have a question regarding the Advisory Council on Easing the Burden of the Official Duties and Public Activities of His Majesty the Emperor. Today, the transcript of the third meeting was made available on the website of the Prime Minister’s Office. It is 40 pages long and goes into detail about the exchanges that took place among the members of the Advisory Council and the experts. Can you once again explain the purpose and the significance of releasing a detailed transcript to the public?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: This was decided by the members of the Advisory Council. I understand that they decided to release not a summary but the details in the form of a transcript, provided that this applies only to the third hearing, believing that giving the public access to accurate information regarding the views of the hearing members is beneficial for deepening the discussions. In any case, the Government respects the decision made by the Advisory Council members and will make efforts to disseminate information on the content of these hearings.


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