Courtesy Call on Prime Minister Shinzo Abe by Mr. António Guterres, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
December 4, 2013
On December 4, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe received a courtesy call by Mr. António Guterres, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), for approximately 20 minutes from 6:35 p.m. An overview of the meeting follows:
1. Welcoming the visit to Japan by High Commissioner Guterres, Prime Minister Abe said Japan places great value on the activities of the Office of the UNHCR and hopes to work with the office in extending assistance to countries and areas including Syria, Africa, Myanmar and Afghanistan.
2. High Commissioner Guterres expressed his gratitude to Japan for its support for the Office of the UNHCR. High Commissioner also noted that a sharp increase in the number of Syrian refugees and displaced people in the country has become a serious problem with implications for neighboring countries. He said Japanese assistance to deal with problems not only in Syria but also in such areas as Africa, Afghanistan and Myanmar is important and highly appreciated. High Commissioner Guterres said Japan's diplomatic policies and the policies of the Office of the UNHCR have much in common, including the focus on human security. During the meeting, he highly appreciated Prime Minister Abe's speech to the United Nations General Assembly in September, on the protection of women in conflict. Additionally, High Commissioner Guterres pointed out that Japanese assistance to African and other countries has earned Japan the trust of the international community.
3. In response, Prime Minister Abe said the Japanese government will steadily implement assistance according to the pledge made at the fifth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD V), provide support for efforts to tackle problems in Syria and Myanmar, promote the protection of women's rights and greater use of their abilities, and deal with the issue of human security.