Extra Press Conference by the Defense Minister(09:35-09:39 A.M. October 11, 2010)
- Extra Press Conference by the Defense Minister (Doorstepping)
Time & Date: 09:35-09:39 A.M. October 11, 2010
Place: Lobby, 1st Floor, InterContinental Hotel in Hanoi, Vietnam(This is a provisional translation of an announcement by the Defense Minister and the Q&A session at the subsequent press conference for reference purposes only)
The original text is in Japanese.
2. Questions and Answers
Could you please tell us about the views you exchanged with U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates concerning the situation in the East China Sea over the Senkaku Islands issue?
I extended my appreciation to the U.S. side for clarifying its position based on Article 5 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty. We reaffirmed that Japan and the United States would definitely work together to address this issue. We had a very good discussion within this broad framework.
Did Defense Secretary Gates make any specific remarks such as the application of Article 5 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty?
No. I expressed my appreciation for what had been announced. Since we already understood each other well, he did not make any particular comments on what you have just said now.
What kind of views did you exchange on other topics such as the Futenma issue?
I told him that Japan would try to do its best on host-nation support (HNS), in which the United States has a strong interest. About the Futenma issue, I expressed our wish to come to a broad agreement on the replacement facility, promptly and unfailingly. We talked to each other with a bitter smile, that like Japan, the United States as well has tough domestic political issues.
Did you talk about the Three Principles on Arms Exports? If you did, could you explain what views were exchanged?
I brought up the topic. I told him that while this was not a Cabinet decision, as the Defense Minister I wished to formulate something new, taking into account the report by the Council on the Future of National Security and Defense Capabilities in the New Era.
And how did Defense Secretary Gates respond?
He expressed a very forward-looking view, stating that he would welcome the idea very much. I emphasized that this was an issue that even the Liberal Democratic Party had failed to achieve despite its long ruling history; that the consensus building among the Cabinet members would become the most important factor for the new government to successfully address the issue; and that I wished to set a broad direction for this within the process for the review of the National Defense Program Guidelines (NDPG).
Going back to the Senkaku Islands issue, what do you think about the significance of the bilateral meeting between the defense ministers of Japan and the United States at this particular time, in which you have exchanged views on the issue and confirmed each other's intention to cooperate?
The meeting was held in a very timely manner. And it was very significant for the security of not only Japan and the United States, but also the East China Sea and the South China Sea. I believe it allowed Japan and the United States to reaffirm each other's intention to reinforce the foundation of the Japan-U.S. Alliance firmly.
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