Internet Press Chat Conference 26 January 2006

  1. Statement by Press Secretary/Director-General for Press and Public Relations on the demise of the President of Kosovo Ibrahim Rugova
  2. Visit by Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Katsutoshi Kaneda to London to Attend the London Conference on Afghanistan
  3. Seminar on the Promotion of Accession to the International Counter-Terrorism Conventions and Protocols
  4. Fourth Japan-U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS) Plenary Meeting
  5. Grant aid to Mongolia
  6. Grant aid to the Islamic Republic of Mauritania
  7. Grant aid to the Republic of Nicaragua
  8. Debt-relief measure for the Republic of Rwanda
  9. Question concerning violation of Japanese airspace off Northern Hokkaido
  10. Follow-up question concerning Senior Vice-Minister Kaneda's visit to London
  11. Question concerning election in the Palestinian Territories

  1. Statement by Press Secretary/Director-General for Press and Public Relations on the demise of the President of Kosovo Ibrahim Rugova

    Deputy Press Secretary Tomohiko Taniguchi: Let me start today's Regular Internet Chat Press Conference. Today, I would like to make several announcements before I take questions.

    The first is about a Statement by the Press Secretary/Director-General for Press and Public Relations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on the Demise of the President of Kosovo Ibrahim Rugova.

    Japan expresses its deep sympathy to all the people of Kosovo over the demise of the President of Kosovo, Ibrahim Rugova.

    Japan hopes that the leaders and people of Kosovo will overcome their deep sorrow to take a constructive approach to Kosovo's future status talks and to continue striving to construct a democratic and multi-ethnic society.

    As Japan intends to continue to contribute to the resolution of the Kosovo issue in concert with the international community, it is ready to cooperate with the status talk process.

    Related Information (Press Release)

  2. Visit by Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Katsutoshi Kaneda to London to attend the London Conference on Afghanistan

    Mr. Taniguchi: The next is about the visit by Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Katsutoshi Kaneda to London to attend the London Conference on Afghanistan.

    Mr. Katsutoshi Kaneda, Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, will visit London as the chief delegate of Japan to the London Conference on Afghanistan that will be held on 31 January and 1 February.

    At this Conference, Mr. Kaneda will emphasize the significance of Japan's assistance to Afghanistan and will then stress the importance of the continued support of the international community for Afghanistan as the process for building a national governance structure was completed last December.

    During his stay in London, Mr. Kaneda will exchange views on the situation in Afghanistan and reconstruction assistance with other participants in the Conference.

    Related Information (Press Release)

  3. Seminar on the Promotion of Accession to the International Counter-Terrorism Conventions and Protocols

    Mr. Taniguchi: The next item is about the Seminar on the Promotion of Accession to the International Counter-Terrorism Conventions and Protocols.

    The Seminar on the Promotion of Accession to the International Counter-Terrorism Conventions and Protocols for the Asia-Pacific countries is being held in Tokyo from 25 to 27 January.

    The Seminar will be attended by government experts from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, Timor-Leste, Republic of the Fiji Islands, Independent State of Papua New Guinea, Commonwealth of Australia and the United States of America in charge of the International Counter-Terrorism Conventions and Protocols and domestic legislative procedures related to them in their countries.

    From Japan, Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Kiyohiko Toyama, and the officials in charge at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and the Ministry of Justice will attend. Vice-Minister Toyama will deliver opening remarks. Also attending the Seminar will be specialists from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the United Nations Asia and Far East Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders (UNAFEI).

    The upcoming seminar is the third of its kind (the previous one was held in the last fiscal year) and is aimed at supporting the efforts of the Asia-Pacific countries through introducing the legal structures and experiences of Japan and other countries and also the efforts of the international organizations concerned to promote accession by the Asia-Pacific countries to the International Counter-Terrorism Conventions and Protocols.

    Related Information (Press Release)

  4. Fourth Japan-U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS) Plenary Meeting

    Mr. Taniguchi: The next is about the Fourth Japan-U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS) Plenary Meeting on 27 January.

    The Fourth Japan-U.S. Global Positioning System (GPS) Plenary Meeting will be held in Tokyo on 27 January to study and discuss the current status of the GPS service as well as the various issues for the future.

    The Japanese delegation is to be headed by Director of the International Science Cooperation Division Kozo Honsei of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and comprised of other related officials including personnel from the Cabinet Office, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC), the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MLIT) who are heads of sections or divisions.

    The U.S. delegation is to be headed by Director of the Office of Space and Advanced Technology Ralph Braibanti of the Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, Department of State, and comprised of other related officials including personnel from the Joint Program Office (JPO), which is responsible for the maintenance and operation of the GPS. The second meeting on 16 October 2002 and the third on 18 November 2004 were held in Tokyo, Japan and Washington D.C., U.S. respectively.

    Related Information (Japan-U.S. Relations)

  5. Grant aid to Mongolia

    Mr. Taniguchi: The next is about grant aid to Mongolia.

    The Government of Japan has decided to extend grant aid of 330 million yen to Mongolia for assistance of underprivileged farmers in the country and notes to this effect were exchanged between Ambassador of Japan to Mongolia Yasuyoshi Ichihashi, and Acting Minister for Foreign Affairs of Mongolia Tsendiin Munh-Orgil, on 24 January in Ulan Bator, the capital of Mongolia.

    It is expected that with the implementation of this grant aid, food production by small-scale farmers in Mongolia will be increased, thereby contributing to improving the food self-sufficiency rate of the country.

    Related Information (Japan-Mongolia Relations)

  6. Grant aid to the Islamic Republic of Mauritania

    Mr. Taniguchi: The next is about grant aid (food aid) to the Islamic Republic of Mauritania.

    The Government of Japan has decided to extend grant aid of up to 300 million yen for food aid to the Islamic Republic of Mauritania and notes to this effect were exchanged between Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Mauritania Akira Nakajima, holding Ambassador to the Republic of Senegal, and Minister for Economic Affairs and Development of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania Mohamed Ould Abed on 24 January.

    Related Information (Japan-Mauritania Relations)

  7. Grant aid to the Republic of Nicaragua

    Mr. Taniguchi: The next is about grant aid to the Republic of Nicaragua.

    The Government of Japan has decided to extend grant aid of up to 94 million yen to the Government of the Republic of Nicaragua with a view to contributing to the implementation of the project for the construction of general hospital in Boaco Department.

    Notes to this effect were exchanged between Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of Nicaragua Mitsuhiro Kagami, and Ministro de Relaciones Exteriores de la Republica de Nicaragua Norman Caldera Cardenal, on 25 January(local time: 24 January) in Managua.

    It is expected that the implementation of this grant aid will allow the new hospital in Boaco to fulfill the original functions of a hospital and become a central hospital in the Boaco Province and the three northeastern provinces. It is also expected that sanitary medical services will be provided to the people in these provinces.

    Related Information (Japan-Nicaragua Relations)

  8. Debt-relief measure for the Republic of Rwanda

    Mr. Taniguchi: The last item is about a debt-relief measure for the Republic of Rwanda (in the form of debt cancellation).

    The Government of Japan, based on the Paris Club Agreement, agreed on an arrangement with the Government of the Republic of Rwanda to implement a debt-relief measure (in the form of debt cancellation). This measure applies to all the yen loan debt the Republic of Rwanda owes to the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) to the Government of the Republic of Rwanda, and the amount of debt to be cancelled totals approximately 1.45469 billion yen. Notes to this effect were exchanged between Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of Rwanda Satoru Miyamura, (stationed in Kenya), and H.E. Ambassador Rosemary Museminali, Minister of State in Charge of Cooperation of Rwanda, on 25 January in Kigali.

    Related Information (Japan-Rwanda Relations)

  9. Question concerning violation of Japanese airspace off Northern Hokkaido

    Q: Do you have any new information about the Foreign Ministry's announcement last night that an aircraft thought to belong to the Russian Federation has violated Japanese airspace off the northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido seven times Wednesday night? Has Russia admitted that it has violated airspace?

    Mr. Taniguchi: Before answering your question let me tell you that the number of scrambling take-offs have declined markedly after the Cold War. For instance in the year 1984 the number was 944, while for the year 2004 the number was 141.

    About the Russian response here is what the situation is like. Today, on 26 January, the Sakhalin Coast and Border Guard Service contacted the Japanese Consulate-General at Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk and admitted that the aircraft in question was one called Antonov 72 that was part of the Sakhalin Coast and Border Guard Service.

    Related Information (Japan-Russia Relations)

  10. Follow-up question concerning Senior Vice-Minister Kaneda's visit to London

    Q: During Mr. Kaneda's visit to London, is Japan expected to unveil new aid to Afghanistan?

    Mr. Taniguchi: In regards to Senior Vice-Minister Kaneda's visit to London, Japan is making a pledge about further support to Afghanistan, in addition to a billion dollar assistance Japan has already pledged and made to the country. As for the details of the pledge I can not tell you at the moment.

    Related Information (Press Release)

  11. Question concerning election in the Palestinian Territories

    Q: Good afternoon, Mr. Taniguchi. Could you tell me the Japanese Government's stance if Hamas wins cabinet posts in a coalition deal after the Palestinian legislative elections? Is there a possibility that the Prime Minister would deal with Hamas on certain conditions?

    Mr. Taniguchi: Regarding Hamas, we are watching very closely whether and how Hamas has changed from a terrorism advocacy group to a democratic political entity that is ready to comply with some of the norms accepted across the world.

    I hope to see you again here in two weeks.

    Related Information (Japan-Palestinian Authorities Relations)


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