Japan-Germany Defense Minister’s Telephone Conversation

April 24, 2020
Japan Ministry of Defense
in Japanese

On April 24, 2020, Minister KONO had a telephone conversation with German Federal Minister of Defence, Kramp-Karrenbauer.

  1. The two ministers exchanged views on issues such as the roles to be played by the defense authorities given the global spread of COVID-19. Minister Kono explained about the activities and infection-preventative measures Japan Self-Defense Forces have undertaken in their operation on the cruise ship Diamond Princess which was completed with no infected member, and analysis by the SDF Central Hospital by using a presentation document (see attached). Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer also explained about the situations and measures such as accepting infected foreign nationals form overseas to Germany.
  2. Minister Kono also shared with Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer that a German couple who were treated at the SDF Central Hospital after disembarking the cruise ship Diamond Princess kindly sent a letter addressed to the Chief of Staff, Ground Self-Defense Force to convey their appreciation for medical assistance provided by the JSDF. Minister Kramp-Karrenbaueralso expressed her appreciation for the JSDF assistance.
  3. Further, two ministers exchanged views on defense cooperation between Japan and Germany. Minister Kono, taking into consideration the implications of COVID-19, expressed the importance of both countries’ maintaining seamless defense posture and of continued and strengthened bilateral defense cooperation to uphold and reinforce the Free and Open Indo-Pacific with the support of Germany’s commitment in the region.
  4. The two ministers agreed on the following three points bearing in mind the circumstances arisen by the spread of COVID-19;
  1. sharing information, knowledge and lessons learnt about the measures taken by defense authorities towards overcoming COVID-19 at the earliest stage;
  2. necessity of sharing threat recognition based on the current circumstances and potential effects of the spread of COVID-19 on defense policy of each country; and
  3. promoting vigorously defense cooperation and exchanges to uphold and reinforce the Free and Open Indo-Pacific while maintaining communication between the defense authorities.