Meeting between Mr. Takeshi Iwaya, Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Dr. Dadfar Spanta, Foreign Minister of Afghanistan

July 4, 2007

On July 3 (Tue), Mr. Takeshi Iwaya, Senior Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs, who was on an official visit to Rome to attend Rome Conference on the Rule of Law in Afghanistan, met with Dr. Dadfar Spanta, Foreign Minister of Afghanistan, in Rome for about 30 minutes from 9:40 a.m. (local time).  The gist is as follows.

  1. After the opening greetings, Mr. Iwaya stated that he expected the conference to be successful, that Japan had actively supported Afghanistan through ODA of more than 1.2 billion dollars and the supply activities of Japan's Maritime Self-Defence Force in the Indian Ocean, Japan had made efforts for the DIAG (disbandment of the illegal armed groups) and had hosted a conference on the subject in Tokyo.  In addition, Japan, especially as the chair country of the G8 Summit next year, emphasized it would provide maximum assistance for Afghanistan as long as the Government of Afghanistan and its people kept showing strong determination for the country’s reconstruction.
  2. In response, Dr. Spanta stated that Japan’s assistance up to now was a proof of the long-lasting friendship between the two countries, and he appreciated it very much.  Dr. Spanta highly valued and appreciated not only the enormous amount of Japan’s assistance for reconstruction but also for providing assistance in the field of security through the supply activities of Japan's Maritime Self-Defence Force for maritime interception even though Japan had various kinds of legal and political restrictions, in particular in respect of its constitution.  He said that Japan’s assistance was indispensable and that he strongly expected Japan to continue to support Afghanistan.
  3. On other issues, Mr. Iwaya stated that Japan was deepening cooperation with the NATO/PRT (Provincial Reconstruction Teams), and explained that the first project had been launched with the Lithuania PRT.  Dr. Spanta stated that matters were improving because of cooperation from the international community even though there were still problems to clear that Afghanistan wished to further emphasize its ownership in the future, and that it wished to strengthen partnership with neighboring countries after he described the current situation of security.  Dr. Spanta also stated that he would like to visit Japan again to participate in international conferences among other things.  Mr. Iwaya responded that he welcomed Dr. Spanta to visit Japan, and the meeting closed.