Press Conference by Foreign Minister HAYASHI Yoshimasa
Friday, December 3, 2021, 11:07 a.m. Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit 2021
Mr. HAYASHI Yoshimasa, Minister for Foreign Affairs: I have one announcement, which is about the Tokyo Nutrition for Growth (N4G) Summit.
Japan will host the Tokyo N4G Summit 2021 on December 7 and 8. The Summit will be held in a hybrid format that combines on-site participation from Japan and fully online participation from overseas. Prime Minister Kishida plans to attend the Summit and I will also be attending.
Globally, it is said that one in ten people are suffering from hunger and undernutrition and that one in three is overweight or obese. This problem where undernutrition stunting growth coexists with overnutrition causing lifestyle-related diseases is known as “the double burden of malnutrition,” and it is faced by the entire world, regardless of developing or developed countries. In addition, the spread of COVID-19 has further worsened the global situation on nutrition.
Over 80 countries and organizations will participate in the Tokyo N4G Summit 2021. Through the Summit, the Government of Japan will indicate a direction for improving nutrition to the international community, and also promote concrete actions and contribute to the improvement of global nutrition through encouraging a wide range of stakeholders, such as governments, international organizations, businesses, civil society, and academia, to announce their policies for and financial commitment to the issue. That is all from me.
Establishment of a Senior Coordinator for Human Rights
Yomiuri Shimbun, Abe: I would like to ask about human rights diplomacy. According to some media reports, a senior coordinator in charge of human rights issues will be allocated within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) as early as next April. Please tell us the current status of considerations regarding that post and, once again, how MOFA will address international human rights issues going forward.
Minister Hayashi: The Government of Japan has always promoted human rights diplomacy, in which it firmly raised its voice against serious human rights violations, while also engaging in close bilateral dialogues and cooperation with countries making efforts to protect human rights, and encouraging their independent efforts. Amidst the growing interest in human rights issues, the importance of Japan’s human rights diplomacy has been increasing. In addition, we must also turn our eyes to human rights issues accompanying companies’ economic activities.
Based on this view, MOFA is requesting placement of one senior coordinator in charge of measures against human rights violation in the Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs Division of the Foreign Policy Bureau, through the FY2022 structural request.
We intend to continue to actively advance this form of Japanese human rights diplomacy.
Remarks by Former Prime Minister Abe on a Taiwan Emergency
Hong Kong Phoenix TV, Li: I would like to ask about Japan-China relations, and also about Taiwan. Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe the other day made remarks that “A Taiwan emergency is a Japanese emergency, and therefore an emergency for the Japan-U.S. alliance.” The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs lodged solemn representation over Mr. Abe’s remarks, stating that they were extremely wrong. What is MOFA’s view on such remarks and whether they were actually wrong, and how is MOFA reacting to the protest from the Chinese side? Furthermore, please also tell us again the Government of Japan’s basic stance on Taiwan.
Minister Hayashi: The Government of Japan is not in a position to comment on each remark. However, in response to the solemn representation lodged by the Chinese side to the Japanese Ambassador to China Hideo Tarumi on the evening of December 1, Ambassador Tarumi made an appropriate objection based on Japan’s position.
Japan believes that peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait are important not only for Japan’s security but also for the security of the international community. Our consistent position has been that we hope that issues surrounding Taiwan will be resolved peacefully through direct dialogues among the parties concerned.
Novel Coronavirus (Request to Suspend All Inbound International Flight Bookings)
Asahi Shimbun, Nobira: I would like to ask about the request by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) for the suspension of all new inbound international flight bookings. As Foreign Minister, when did you become aware of this matter and how did MOFA respond to it? In addition, I believe that MOFA has so far been making efforts in arranging an environment for Japanese nationals returning from the regions where the infection is spreading, such as Indonesia. From this perspective, could you please tell us whether you recognize that the request made by MLIT was appropriate?
Minister Hayashi: First of all, this is a matter under the jurisdiction of MLIT. Therefore, I would like to refrain from commenting on it. In addition, I myself learned of this matter from media reports.