Press Conferences

Extraordinary Press Conference by Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida

Sunday, July 3, 2016, 9:30 a.m. Front Entrance Hall, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

This is a provisional translation by an external company for reference purpose only.

Opening Remarks

Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs: I received a report on the situation in Bangladesh by telephone from Mr. Seiji Kihara, State Minister for Foreign Affairs who has already arrived there. State Minister Kihara already went to the scene of the incident and also held consultations with Mr. Shahriar Alam, acting foreign secretary of Bangladesh. Today, State Minister Kihara is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Hasina and Minister Khan of Home Affairs. We are also in the process of arranging a meeting with Foreign Minister Ali. In Bangladesh, we will continue to do everything possible under State Minister Kihara's instructions for the collection of information, the confirmation of facts, and the reception of the families. As government, we will respect the feelings of the families and do whatever we can to support them. As part of those efforts, we are making preparations with the utmost sense of urgency to dispatch the government aircraft this evening, given the wishes of the families, so that all the families will be able to travel there expeditiously. I feel strong indignation for such a cruel and atrocious act of terrorism that took the lives of people who have spent so many efforts on the front lines of Japan's international cooperation. It is most regrettable. Terrorism cannot be tolerated whatever the reason, and I firmly condemn it. I wish to offer my condolences to all the people who are victims of this act of terror. The United Nations Security Council also issued a press statement before 6 a.m. Japan Time this morning to firmly condemni this incident. This was issued with the support of each Security Council member as the result of the proposal that we immediately tabled yesterday as the new chair of the Security Council as of July. In the wake of this incident, we have already issued again Overseas Travel Safety Information and Spot Safety Information regarding Bangladesh, calling on Japanese nationals to exercise caution for acts of terrorism. We also issued Region-wide Safety Information to exercise caution for acts of terrorims over the world, and renewed instructions to all our diplomatic missions abroad to do everything possible to secure the safety of Japanese nationals. That is all I have to say.


Reporter: Minister Kishida, regarding the government aircraft that you referred to as being for this evening, do you mean that you have already begun coordinating with the families? 
Minister Kishida: We are coordinating with the families, and we are moving forward simultaneously with various preparations such as readying the aircraft for flight and securing flight clearance.  
Reporter: What is your sense of the number of family members as of now? 
Minister Kishida: We are contacting all the family members. It is my understanding that they are being confirmed now. 
Reporter: The National Security Council convened this morning at the Prime Minister's Office. To the extent possible, could you tell us about the content of this meeting? 
Minister Kishida: In principle, the content will be announced by the Prime Minister's Office, by the Prime Minister in the case of today, but it goes without saying that the meeting concerned the current case in Bangladesh. Each ministry gave a report on the current situation and shared information, and the Prime Minister instructed us to take all possible measures. The measures taken by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs are as I just explained. 
Reporter: I have one more question. You stated that the State Minister in Bangladesh will be meeting Prime Minister Hasina today. When will the meeting be, what will be the content, and what form will it take? 
Minister Kishida: I will check the content again, but it is my understanding that we will be renewing our request for the provision of information and cooperation regarding this incident. The families will be arriving in Dhaka soon, and we will also be requesting the cooperation of the Government of Bangladesh in making such a response that respects the feelings of the families, including cooperation in the return of the injured and the deceased to Japan. The meeting will essentially be about that. 
Reporter: Minister Kishida, you say that the families are departing this evening. Are you scheduling meetings with the families? 
Minister Kishida: I also intend to go to the airport myself. 
Reporter: Do you mean that you will be speaking with the families there? 
Minister Kishida: The specifics of the logistics have not been determined yet, but if I go to the airport, I presume there will be an opportunity to meet the families, to offer my condolences and sympathy. The matter is still being coordinated.
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