JDF JapanDefenseFocus No.66

SPECIAL FEATURE

The 14th IISS Asia Security Summit
- Shangri-La Dialogue -

From May 30th to 31st, Minister of Defense Gen Nakatani attended the 14th IISS Asia Security Summit.

During the dialogue, he delivered a speech and held meetings with the defense ministers of countries represented at the Summit.

Speech by Minister of DefenseNakatani(excerpt)

Speech by Minister of DefenseNakatani

The Asia-Pacific region has been weaving out success stories, not only in the economic field, but also in the security field, despite number of challenges. It is the responsibility of every one of us here today to let these success stories continue. Japan will, in addition to our own efforts and alliance with the U.S., further deepen our cooperation with countries beginning with the ASEAN member states, Australia, India, Republic of Korea, and Europe.

I used to serve as a GSDF officer. During that period, I spent every day in harsh training, disciplining myself. For the last 60 years, the SDF has always devoted themselves to undergoing harsh training and developing strength, for the sake of peace. My experience is only a part of that. Japan will, under this strength, fulfill a greater responsibility for the future of our "success story" in this Asia Pacific region.

Japan-U.S.-Republic of Korea Defense Ministers Meeting(U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and ROK Minister of National Defense Han Minkoo)

Japan-U.S.-Republic of Korea Defense Ministers Meeting

The three ministers discussed the regional situation including North Korea and Japan-U.S.-ROK defense cooperation and issued a joint statement based on the outcome of this dialogue. During the meeting, the three ministers reemphasized their immutable opposition to North Korea’s possession and continued development of nuclear weapons and their means of delivery. Additionally, the three ministers decided to continue holding consultations on trilateral security issues and agreed to promote trilateral defense cooperation based on democracy and shared security interests.

Japan-U.S.-Australia Defense Ministers Meeting
(U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and Australian Minister for Defence Kevin Andrews)

Japan-U.S.-Australia Defense Ministers Meetin

The three ministers discussed the regional situation including North Korea and Japan-U.S.-Australia defense cooperation, and issued a joint statement based on the outcome of this meeting. The three ministers exchanged their views on defense cooperation through joint training/ exercises and capacity building assistance. They also expressed their strong opposition against coercive action to unilaterally alter the status quo in the East China and South China Seas as well as their serious concern over Chinese land reclamation activities in the South China Sea.

Meeting with U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter

Meeting with U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter

U.S.A Both ministers agreed that they oppose coercive action that would alter the status quo in the East China and South China Sea. They also affirmed that legislation for peace and security will help ensure the effectiveness of the new Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation. They welcomed the fact that the outcome of the discussions at the Cyber Defense Policy Working Group had been put together. Both ministers affirmed that they cooperate in order to mitigate the impact on Okinawa. U.S. Defense Secretary Carter stated that necessary information on Osprey accident occurred in Hawaii will be provided and reassured that thorough steps will be taken to ensure the safe operation of Osprey.

Meeting with ROK Minister of National Defense Han

Meeting with ROK Minister of National Defense Han

korea Both ministers welcomed the first bilateral defense ministerial meeting in four years. Both parties shared their outlook on the security environment, including the situation in North Korea. They exchanged views on national defense policies of both countries including Japan’s legislation for peace and security and the Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation. Discussions were held on the participation of vessels from the ROK navy in the SDF naval review to be held in October this year, the proposal for this year’s search-and-rescue exercise (SAREX), as well as the holding of anti-piracy training in the Gulf of Aden and ongoing discussions to prevent incidental accidents in the sea and air corridors overlapping areas of ADIZ.

Meeting with Australian Minister for Defence Kevin Andrews

Meeting with Australian Minister for Defence Kevin Andrews

Australian With regards to cooperation with Australia’s future submarine program requested in the recent telephone conference, Minister of Defense Nakatani conveyed that a decision was made at the National Security Council’s ministers meeting to begin discussions with the Government of Australia with involvement of private companies in order to examine the potential of specific cooperation in detail. Minister of Defence Andrews expressed his appreciation. Minister of Defense Nakatani gave a summary of the new Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation, and both ministers agreed on the necessity of strengthening Japan-Australia defense cooperation through joint training exercises and other means.

Meeting with New Zealand Minister of Defence Gerry Brownlee

Meeting with New Zealand Minister of Defence Gerry Brownlee

New Zealand Minister of Defense Nakatani explained about Japan’s development of legislation for peace and security. Minister of Defence Brownlee stated that Japan and -New Zealand share a long historical relation and that he hopes to further develop this bilateral relationship. Both ministers also exchanged views on the regional situation and capacity building assistance, among other matters, and indicated their shared awareness of the importance in responding to international terrorism, in particular, ISIL.

Meeting with Malaysian Minister of Defence Hishammuddin Hussein

Meeting with Malaysian Minister of Defence Hishammuddin Hussein

Malaysian Both ministers affirmed that efforts will be made with regard to cooperation between the two ministries of defense based on the agreement reached at the previous Japan-Malaysia Summit Meeting. They also exchanged views about the early signing of the memorandum of understanding on defense cooperation and exchange and about beginning negotiations on cooperative frameworks for defense equipment and technology transfers. Minister of Defense Nakatani explained the details of Japan’s legislation for peace and security. Minister of Defence Hishammuddin spoke about the importance of Japan-ASEAN cooperation from a geopolitical perspective.

Meeting with Singaporean Minister for Defence Ng Eng Hen

Meeting with Singaporean Minister for Defence Ng Eng Hen

Singaporean Minister of Defense Nakatani praised the Shangri-La Dialogue as an important opportunity to provide a venue for the exchange of opinions and discussions involving each country, and stated his intention to build a stronger relationship with ASEAN. Minister for Defence Ng stated that he welcomed Japan’s involvement in ASEAN. Both ministers also shared their views on the regional situation and exchanged opinions on Japan-Singapore defense exchange.

Meeting with German Federal Minister of Defence Ursula von der Leyen

Meeting with German Federal Minister of Defence Ursula von der Leyen

German Both ministers exchanged views on Japan-Germany defense exchanges such as joint exercises between the deployed anti-piracy units between Japan and EU including Germany.They also discussed the situation in Ukraine, including relations with Russia as well as national defense policies, mentioning Germany’s experience with overseas deployment and Japan’s development of the legislation for peace and security.

Meeting with Mongolian Minister of Defense Tserendash Tsolmon

Meeting with Mongolian Minister of Defense Tserendash Tsolmon

Mongolian Both ministers confirmed progress in defense cooperation in accordance with the memorandum on defense cooperation and exchange concluded in 2012. They also agreed to further strengthen this cooperation. Defense Minister Nakatani talked about Japan’s commitment to continuing capacity building assistance in the fields of road construction and sanitation as well as the SDF’s participation in Khaan Quest, a multilateral joint training exercise hosted by Mongolia. Defense Minister Tsolmon thanked Japan for its support and extended an official invitation for Defense Minister Nakatani to visit Mongolia.

Other

Defense Minister Nakatani also met with U.S. Senators including Mr. John McCain who serves as the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services.

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