Japan Ministry of Defense


 
A salvo of smoke grenades fired by Type 90 Battle Tanks at the Fuji Firepower Review
No.19 NOVEMBER 2010

Cover Photograph:
A salvo of smoke grenades fired by Type 90 Battle Tanks at the Fuji Firepower Review

Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa made a speech at the 9th IISS "Shangri-La Dialogue"

On June 5, the Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa attended the 9th IISS Asia Security Summit (the Shangri-La Dialogue) held at the Shangri-La Hotel in Singapore and he made a speech entitled "Japan’s Policies Regarding the Ocean as a Global Commons."

Summary of the speech

Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa giving his speech
Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa giving his speech

At the beginning of the speech, Defense Minister accentuated the fact that Mr.Kan, the incoming Prime Minister at the time, had asked him to attended the summit, and stressed how much the Kan cabinet valued peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region at an international conference.

Then, he touched on the relationship between Japan and the ocean and explained that the ocean had had close connections with Japan’s security since ancient times, quoting a classic Japanese poem called waka composed some 1,300 years ago.

Defense Minister mentioned the history of handling of oceans in the international community, explaining about the expansions of rights and responsibilities in regard to oceans of each country since the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea took effect in 1994, while stating that the oceans had been acquiring the characteristics as "the global commons", just like outer space and cyber space, and that multi-lateral cooperation among international and other organizations was necessary to secure its security.

Defense Minister Kitazawa also gave examples of achievements of the United States which has secured the safety of the vast ocean that stretches throughout Asia for more than past 60 years, and stated that a close cooperative relationship between Japan and the United States would continue to play an important role in this area.

Regarding efforts to secure the safty of sealanes, Defense Minister noted that it would be practical to divide sea-lanes into several sections, and devise security measures according to each area’ s specific circumstances. Then, after describing the situations on terrorism, piracy in various areas of sea and the counter-measures against them, he introduced the specific efforts Japan was making for the maritime security.

In conclusion, Defense Minister Kitazawa expressed the intention that Japan would continue to promote various forms of cooperation with the countries in the region, such as capacity-building, joint exercises, participation in the like Pacific Partnership, in addition to Japan’ s own efforts, saying that securing maritime security with the multi-lateral cooperation would produce common interests in international society.

For the full text of Defense Minister’s Speech, see
Summary of the speech //www.mod.go.jp/j/press/youjin/2010/06/05.html

Secretary-General of the United Nations visits to the Ministry of Defense

Defense Minister Kitazawa met H.E.Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United
Nations at the Ministry of Defense.
Defense Minister Kitazawa met H.E.Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations at the Ministry of Defense.

On August 4, H.E.Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, who came to Japan to attend peace memorial ceremonies in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, held talks with Minister of Defense Toshimi Kitazawa at the Ministry of Defense. The Secretary-General expressed his gratitude for the dispatch of the Japan Self-Defense Forces (SDF) for the UN peacekeeping operations of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), and exchange views with Defense Minister Kitazawa on future peace keeping missions.

Defense Minister Kitazawa said that the administration of the Democratic Party of Japan is decided to handle international contributions in a positive manner. This was the first time that the UN Secretary-General visited the Ministry of Defense.