Japan and the United Nations
Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida Attends the Open Debate of the United Nations Security Council
1. Schedule, participants etc.
(1) On Thursday, July 28, Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs, attended and chaired an open debate in New York on the theme of “Peacebuilding in Africa,” which Japan hosted as the holder of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Presidency.
(2) A comprehensive discussion on peacebuilding in Africa took place in this open debate, with Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the UN, Ambassador Amina Mohamed, Cabinet Secretary (CS) of Foreign Affairs and International Trade of the Republic of Kenya, and Ambassador Smail Chergui, Commissioner for Peace and Security of the African Union Commission (AUC) participating as briefers, while H.E. Mr. Mankeur Ndiaye, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Senegalese Abroad of the Republic of Senegal, H.E. Mr. Georges Rebelo Pinto Chikoti, Minister of External Relations of the Republic of Angola, Y.B. Dato' Sri Anifah Bin Haji Aman, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia, Mr. André Vallini, Minister of State for Development and Francophonie, attached to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development of the French Republic, and permanent representatives from other Member States made statements based on each country’s experiences and knowledge.
(3) After the open debate, Minister Kishida hosted a luncheon for the participants of the debate and exchanged views on international situations.
2. Overview of the discussion
(1) Minister Kishida explained that Japan’s fundamental stance in peacebuilding consisted of emphasizing “people” and “the field,” improving living standards, and tolerance of diversity, and stated that institution-building, capacity building for the people, building trust and innovation were the keys to peacebuilding in Africa in the future. Minister Kishida emphasized Japan’s strong commitment to African peace and security and announced that Japan would implement assistance of approximately 120 million USD (approximately 14 billion yen), including human resources development for 30,000 people, from 2016 to 2018 in order to strengthen counterterrorism capacity in Africa.
(2) A large number of participating countries appreciated Japan’s initiative in holding this open debate.
(3) On the occasion of this open debate, a Security Council Presidential Statement on “Peacebuilding in Africa” (outline / provisional translation / English version) was adopted which emphasized the importance of trust-building, the rule of law and utilization science and technology.
3. Bilateral meetings etc.
The overviews of the meetings that Minister Kishida held on July 28 on the occasion of this open debate are as follows.
(1) Breakfast meeting with the Foreign Ministers of Kenya and Senegal
Minister Kishida hosted a breakfast meeting with CS of Foreign Affairs Amina and Foreign Minister Ndiaye. Minister Kishida explained that the decision to adopt “Peacebuilding in Africa” as the theme of the UNSC open debate was evidence of the importance that Japan attached to Africa. Minister Kishida stated that the Sixth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD VI) in August would be an important opportunity for promoting Africa’s development agenda and that he intended to bring the contributions that Japan is making through its strengths in human resources development and high-quality technologies to the direct attention of African leaders.
In addition, with regard to UNSC reform, Minister Kishida explained that Japan strongly supported a significant elevation in Africa’s representation, and the three ministers shared the view that coordination between the G4 and Africa would be important for promoting UNSC reform.
Minister Kishida held a meeting with Foreign Minister Anifah Aman and explained that he hoped to cooperate with Malaysia, which together with Japan serves as a UNSC member from Asia and is also a strategic partner, on regional stability and peacefully resolving problems in the region in particular.
The two ministers also exchanged views on topics such as problems relating to the South China Sea and the situation in North Korea and shared the view that they would work also closely together on challenges facing the region and the international community in the future.
Minister Kishida stated that Japan would continue to contribute to peacebuilding in Africa, noted that expectation toward the UN in the fight against terrorism is high, and explained that Japan strongly supported the Plan of Action on countering violent extremism announced by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Minister Kishida also explained that he hoped to bring greater pressure to bear on North Korea through strict implementation of UNSC resolutions and resolute response in the UNSC.
In response, Secretary-General Ban expressed his gratitude for Japan’s contributions in fields such as peacebuilding and counterterrorism. He further mentioned the importance of the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), and also commented on the situation in North Korea and climate change.