Japan-U.S. Foreign Ministers’ Meeting(Summary)

August 9, 2014

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On August 9, commencing at around 12:45 p.m. for approximately 50 minutes, Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, who was visiting Myanmar to attend the ASEAN-related Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, held a meeting over lunch with the Honorable John Kerry, Secretary of State of the United States. An outline of the meeting is as follows. They held strategic discussions on the imminent international situations including those in Ukraine, North Korea and Iraq, and confirmed to enhance coordination between Japan and the United States in response to these challenges.

1. Initial Remarks

At the beginning, Minister Kishida thanked Secretary Kerry for the telephone call Secretary Kerry made on Minister Kishida’s birthday (July 29). Minister Kishida and Secretary Kerry concurred that amid a number of matters all over the world to which Japan and the United States need to respond coordinately, it is meaningful for the foreign ministers of Japan and the United States to meet directly and hold discussions.

2. Situation in Ukraine

Minister Kishida introduced his visit to Ukraine in July and explained that he encouraged Ukraine to undertake political and economic reforms and dialogue, and that the Government of Japan launched concrete support measures that include steady implementation of economic support up to 1.5 billion USD. Minister Kishida also expressed concerns about the situation in Eastern Ukraine, and Minister Kishida and Secretary Kerry confirmed that Japan and the United States will work together and make a unified response at the G7 as well.

3. North Korea

With regard to North Korea, while Minister Kishida said that detailed discussions would take place at the Japan-U.S.-ROK Foreign Ministers’ Meeting later on the same day, he explained the Japan’s basic position of adhering to a policy of seeking a comprehensive solution to the concerns including the abduction, nuclear and missile problems, and he gained the understanding of the United States. Minister Kishida and Secretary Kerry confirmed that Japan and the U.S. will continue to work closely together.

4. Situation in Iraq

Secretary Kerry explained the recent targeted airstrikes by the United States in Iraq. In response, Minister Kishida said Japan had heretofore supported the fight against terrorism by the Government of Iraq and the United States, and that he understands the recent targeted airstrikes by the United States were carried out as a part of such fight in order to protect U.S. personnel and support troops protecting citizens placed in severe circumstances, based on the consent of the Government of Iraq. Minister Kishida also said that Japan is ready to continue to cooperate with the countries concerned including the United States., in order to restore the stability of Iraq, and that he would like to closely communicate with the U.S. side.

5. Situation in Gaza

Minister Kishida said he is deeply concerned about the deteriorating situation in Gaza and respects Secretary Kerry’s efforts including his visit to the region. Additionally, Minister Kishida explained that in July Japan decided to implement 5.5 million USD of emergency aid and also dispatched Parliamentary Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Kishi who had urged the countries concerned including the two relevant parties, to achieve an immediate ceasefire. Minister Kishida and Secretary Kerry confirmed that they will continue to coordinate their responses, including the restoration of Gaza.

6. Climate change

Secretary Kerry raised the issue of climate change, and both sides shared the view that Japan and the United States will closely work together towards the 21st Conference of Parties (COP21) that will be held in Paris next year.