Japan-North Korea Relations
Measures taken by the Government of Japan against North Korea
February 10, 2016
Japan has repeatedly and strongly urged North Korea to fully comply with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions (UNSCRs) and refrain from any provocations including nuclear tests or ballistic missile launches. The abductions issue, the most important issue for the Abe Administration, still remains unresolved despite calls for the return of all abductees at the earliest possible date.
It was against this backdrop that North Korea went ahead with its fourth nuclear test and the ballistic missile launch. These acts constitute direct and grave threats to Japan’s security and are totally unacceptable as they seriously undermine the peace and security of Northeast Asia as well as the international community.
Following these developments, the Government of Japan has seriously looked into what concrete measures should be taken from the viewpoint of taking the most effective approach toward the comprehensive resolution of outstanding issues of concern, such as the abductions, nuclear, and missile issues.
The Government of Japan has now decided to take the following measures of its own against North Korea.
First, the Government of Japan implements restrictions on movement of persons. The details are as follows:
1. Ban on the entry of North Korean citizens
2. Ban on the re-entry of North Korean authority officials residing in Japan with an aim to go to North Korea; ban on the re-entry of those who are in the position to assist the above-mentioned North Korean authority officials residing in Japan with an aim to go to North Korea (expand the targets than before)
3. Request to all residents not to visit North Korea
4. Suspension of Japanese government officials’ visit to North Korea
5. Ban on the landing of North Korean flag vessels’ crew members
6. Ban on the landing of foreign crew members, sentenced for the violation of the trade and financial measures against North Korea; ban on the re-entry of those foreign citizens residing in Japan, sentenced for the violation of the above-mentioned measures, with an aim to go to North Korea
7. Ban on the re-entry of foreign experts on nuclear and missile technology residing in Japan with an aim to go to North Korea
Second, the Government of Japan reduces the lowest amount that requires notification from equivalent to 1 million yen to 100,000 yen concerning the carrying of currency etc. to North Korea and bans the payment to North Korea except for the case in which the amount is less than 100,000 yen with humanitarian purposes.
Third, the Government of Japan bans the entry of all North Korean flag vessels including those for humanitarian purposes and bans the entry of third-country flag vessels which have previously called at ports in North Korea.
Fourth, the Government of Japan adds to entities and individuals designated for asset-freezing measures.
In sum, under the consistent policy of “dialogue and pressure” and “action for action,” Japan strongly urges North Korea to take positive responses toward the comprehensive resolution of outstanding issues of concern, such as the abductions, nuclear, and missile issues. Japan intends to maintain dialogue for resolving the abductions issue, its most important issue, and to make its utmost efforts to realize the return of all abductees at the earliest possible date based on the agreement between Japan and North Korea reached at Stockholm in May, 2014.