(* This is a provisional translation by an external company for reference purpose only. The original text is in Japanese.)
Press Conference by Minister for Foreign Affairs Masahiko Koumura
Date: Friday, May 9, 2008, 9:15 a.m.
Place: In front of the Ministers' Room in the House
- Emergency Assistance to Myanmar
- North Korean Issues
- Japan-China Consultations concerning the East China Sea and Other Matters
The Government of Japan has decided to provide an additional 10 million US dollars in emergency assistance for the cyclone disaster in Myanmar. This assistance will be implemented with the cooperation of United Nations agencies, namely the World Food Programme (WFP), the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). We also seek to make a human contribution such as the dispatch of a Japan Disaster Relief Team, but as we have received no positive indication from Myanmar, we will again call on Myanmar today. Calls will be made in both Tokyo and Myanmar.
With regard to the human contribution to Myanmar, are you considering dispatching a ship for example?
We are considering various options, including the dispatch of a Japan Disaster Relief Team for example, but we have received no indication that Myanmar would accept our offer.
There are media reports that Mr. and Mrs. Yokota are trying to meet their granddaughter in the Republic of Korea and are seeking help from President Lee Myung-bak to do so. Could you tell us if there is any authenticity to these reports?
I have not read the content of the reports. I saw the headlines, but as I know nothing about this story, I did not read further assuming that it is unlikely true. There are no plans as reported in the newspapers.
In consultations between North Korea and the United States it was reported that North Korea has made an announcement on the quantity of its plutonium holdings. Have you heard anything about this?
At the current point I have not heard exactly what has taken place and to what extent, but this is something that North Korea must do no matter what.
With regard to the issue of the gas fields, a number of reports have stated that in the Japan-China Summit Meeting it was agreed to engage in joint development over the median line at Shirakaba gas field. What do you have to say about such reports?
Talks did not progress to that extent. In short, what was agreed at the meeting is nothing more or less than what the two leaders said.
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