Japan's Efforts based on Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law
In the wake of the 9-11 terrorist attacks, the international community has been continuing the "Fight against Terrorism" in order to eradicate terrorism. Even recent days, terrorism incidents allegedly related to Al-Qaida continue to take place all over the world: Saudi Arabia (Jedda, December 2004), Philippines (Manila, February 2005), Egypt (Sharm el-Sheikh, July 2005), London (July 2005) and Bali (October 2005), and threat of terrorist attacks persist.
The international community is jointly taking measures against terrorism, which is a common threat to mankind as a whole. In the Summit Meeting of the UN Security Council in September 2005, many countries appealed for the importance of counter-terrorism. In the G8 Leaders' Meeting held in July 2005, the leaders reached consensus on reinforcing efforts to reduce threats of terrorism. (*)
Against this backdrop, many countries have been contributing to "Operation Enduring Freedom," a military operation to eradicate terrorists, through dispatching their armed forces or taking other measures. About 20 countries dispatch their armed forces or military officers to the mainland of Afghanistan, and seven countries are participating in the operation in the Indian Ocean to prevent and deter proliferation of terrorists and their related materials (OEF-MIO Maritime Interdiction Operation). (**)
Furthermore, 36 countries are participating in the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), implementing the maintenance of security in Kabul and its surrounding area to prevent Afghanistan from once again becoming breeding grounds for terrorism. Moreover 22 countries are providing reconstruction assistance by way of the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs).
The international community has continued to make united efforts to remove threats brought by the 9-11 terrorist attacks. It is necessary for Japan to play an appropriate role in such efforts of the international community. From this perspective, the Government of Japan has recently decided to extend the duration of the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law, and to actively contribute to the international efforts for the prevention and eradication of international terrorism, by dispatching Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) vessels to the Indian Ocean for refueling operations.
Disrupting terrorists now
3. The immediate imperative is to reduce the threat from those already intent on terrorism. We have had considerable success, but must continue to enhance our efforts.
These elections (note: provincial elections on 18 September, 2005) will mark a successful conclusion to the formal Bonn Process, but not the end of the international community's commitment to Afghanistan.
We support the effort being made by the international community through the UN Security Council mandated and NATO-led International Security Assistance Force, and through Operation Enduring Freedom, to promote security and stability in Afghanistan.
The US and other coalition countries continue to carry out the Operation Enduring Freedom-Maritime Interdiction Operation (OEF-MIO) in the Indian Ocean to prevent free movement of terrorists and their related materials such as weapons and ammunition at sea.
137,000 queries and 11,000 boardings and searchings against suspicious vessels have been conducted since September 2001.
During last twelve months, 35,000 queries and 1,400 boardings and searchings have been conducted
This operation has been effective in deterring free movement and proliferation of terrorists at sea. Specific achievement of the maritime interdiction operation such as the boardings and searchings of vessels is as follows:
(1) In May 2005, the coalition found and confiscated about 4,200 pounds (2.1 tons) of hashish in a vessel (a dhow) through boarding and searching.
(2) In March 2005, the coalition found about 6,000 pounds (3 tons) of hashish in a vessel through boarding and searching.
(3) In May 2004, about 550 guns (AK-47, PRK, 14.5 mm machine gun) and ammunition were found in a vessel (a dhow) through boarding and searching.
Many leaders and members of Al-Qaida have been killed or arrested as a result of these efforts of the fight against terrorism including OEF-MIO.
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