Press Conferences

Press Conference by Foreign Press Secretary OHTAKA Masato

Wednesday, October 30, 2019, 4:30 p.m. Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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

Opening Remarks

(1) G eneral Election and Re-election of H.E. Mr. Nyusi as the President of the Republic of Mozambique

Mr. Ohtaka Masato, Press Secretary: I would like to issue a Statement by Press Secretary. The title is “General Election and re-election of H.E. Mr. Nyusi as the President of the Republic of Mozambique,” and copies will be distributed soon.

The content states that the Government of Japan welcomes that the general election in the Republic of Mozambique was held in a peaceful manner on October 15, and congratulates H.E. Mr. Filipe Jacinto Nyusi on his re-election as the President.

The Government of Japan hopes that, under the strong leadership of President Nyusi, the Government of the Republic of Mozambique will continue to promote good governance, to foster economic and social development through consolidation of the democratic process, and to further stabilize the security situation particularly in the northern area of the country.

Japan is committed to further strengthening friendly and cooperative relations with the Republic of Mozambique on the basis of excellent relations of trust that have been established through public-private cooperation in areas such as mining, energy and infrastructure. That would be the content.

(2) Diplomatic Archives and Modern Japan’s History , a Diplomatic Archives Exhibition Jointly Held by Wakayama Prefecture, the Wakayama Prefecture Board of Education, and the Diplomatic Archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan

Press Secretary Ohtaka: I would also like to give some remarks about an event in Japan. It is a matter that the Diplomatic Archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) of Japan has been actively involved with.

The Diplomatic Archives will jointly hold a diplomatic archives exhibition with Wakayama Prefecture and the Wakayama Prefecture Board of Education at the Museum of Modern Art, Wakayama from November 2.

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the establishment of MOFA since Japan began exchanges with various foreign countries at full scale. The content of this exhibition introduces the path of modern Japan’s diplomacy through archives, centered on the achievements of MUTSU Munemitsu, who was from Wakayama Prefecture, who led the success of amending the unequal treaties, the first difficult issue Japan faced on the international stage.

Materials from the Diplomatic Archives to be exhibited include original copies of the Japan-Mexico Treaty of Amity, Commerce, and Navigation and the Anglo-Japanese Treaty of Commerce and Navigation, as well as the prison uniform worn by MUTSU Munemitsu when he was imprisoned.

In addition, there will be an exhibition commemorative symposium on November 4. It seems that there are still some seats left, so please visit if you are interested. FUKUSHIMA Kayoko, the Director of the Diplomatic Archives, and others are planned to participate in the symposium.

Issue of the Former Civilian Workers from the Korean Peninsula

Sankei Shimbun, Rikitake: One year has passed since the rulings by the Supreme Court of the Republic of Korea (ROK) concerning the issue of the former civilian workers from the Korean Peninsula. As the completion of the liquidation process for the plaintiffs’ organization is expected within the year or around the beginning of the new year, Japan has been requesting the Government of the ROK to quickly remedy its breach of international law up until now, but a response has not been seen during this year. Amidst this, what response does the Government of Japan intend to take to avoid liquidation going forward?

Press Secretary Ohtaka: As you stated, there has been a succession of negative movements from the ROK side over the past year, and as a result, Japan-ROK relations are in a severe situation in various fields. Amidst this, in particular, we have strongly requested the ROK side to remedy the breach of international law due to the series of rulings by the ROK Supreme Court last year concerning the issue of the former civilian workers from the Korean Peninsula, which is currently the largest issue of Japan-ROK relations. It is extremely regrettable that the Government of the ROK has not responded even though a year has passed since the rulings.

As Japan, going forward, I believe that it will be summed up in that we will continue to urge the ROK side to take wise responses, based on Japan’s consistent position regarding concerns between Japan and the ROK including urging the ROK to remedy the breach of international law.

Holding of Japan-ROK Summit Meeting

Sankei Shimbun, Rikitake: In relation to the previous question, a Japan-ROK Summit Meeting has not been held since the ruling regarding the former civilian workers from the Korean Peninsula last year. What would be the situation needed in order to be able to hold a Summit Meeting going forward?

Press Secretary Ohtaka: As has been stated, nothing has been decided at the present regarding holding a Japan-ROK Summit Meeting going forward. In addition, speaking generally, various circumstances are comprehensively considered regarding holding various individual Summit Meetings including that of Japan and the ROK. A decision is made appropriately each time, and a Japan-ROK Summit Meeting is no exception to this.

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