Japan-India Summit Meeting

Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, during his visit to New York, held talks with Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee on September 12. The following is a summary of the meeting.

1. Bilateral Relations

(1) Prime Minister Koizumi said that, on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and India, he was delighted by the progress in cooperation between the two countries and would like to continue to steadily promote bilateral relations in line with the Japan-India Joint Declaration issued in December 2001.

(2) Prime Minister Koizumi expressed delight that the Delhi subway, a yen-loan project, would be partially opened shortly and that Japan-India cooperation was making progress with regard to anti-pollution measures for the River Ganges.

(3) Prime Minister Koizumi noted that U.S. President George W. Bush had delivered a speech on terrorism that day and that he himself had attended the memorial ceremony the previous day. He said that he understood the feelings of the Indian people, who had been suffering from terrorism. He said that the fight against terrorism would continue and that he would like Japan and India to cooperate closely in the fight against terrorism.

(4) Prime Minister Vajpayee said that he was meeting Prime Minister Koizumi for the first time since his own visit to Japan in December 2001, and that relations between Japan and India were being further strengthened and cooperation was taking place in various fields. He said that the potential for bilateral cooperation was great and that would like to take advantage of it. He stated that the Delhi subway, which was under construction through yen loans, was extremely popular among the Indian people.

2. India-Pakistan Situation

Prime Minister Koizumi mentioned that he had spoken on the telephone with the leaders of the two countries when the tension between India and Pakistan rose few months ago, and that he had held talks with Pakistan President Pervaiz Musharraf the previous day. Prime Minister Koizumi said that he realized both India and Pakistan were in a difficult situation but asked the two sides to make the utmost efforts to solve the problem through dialogue with restraint.

3. Disarmament and Nonproliferation

(1) Prime Minister Koizumi stated that Japan was cooperating with the international community toward the ultimate abolition of nuclear weapons and that he wanted India to take Japan's position into consideration and make efforts for world peace.

(2) Regarding the nuclear issue, Prime Minister Vajpayee stated that India had clarified its position of not being the first to use nuclear weapons and not using nuclear weapons against non-nuclear states and that India had been making efforts for many years toward establishing a nuclear-free zone in South Asia. However, he said, recently the nuclear threat around India has been increasing. If all nuclear weapons were abolished, he said, India would not fall behind. He said, however, that because nuclear weapons were a problem not only for South Asia but for Asia and the whole world, it was necessary to make progress in this problem on a global scale.

4. Environment

(1) Prime Minister Koizumi praised India's hosting of the Eighth Conference of the Parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP8) and said that balancing the environment and development was an important issue that should be tackled not only by the developing countries but also by all developed countries. He stated that Japan also wants to provide as much cooperation as possible.

(2) Prime Minister Vajpayee said he highly valued the fact that Japan had made remarkable achievements in the environmental field.

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