Press Conference

Press Conference by the Defense Minister(09:38-09:41 A.M. April 20, 2012)

Extra Press Conference by the Defense Minister
Time & Date 09:38-09:41 A.M.April 20, 2012
Place: In front of the Cabinet Meeting Room in the House
(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.

1. Announcements

None.

2. Questions and Answers

Question:
The censure motion against you is scheduled to pass the House of Councillors plenary session today. The LDP is predicted to conduct a total boycott on all sessions. How do you feel as a Minister in bringing forth this situation? Do you have any plans to resign on your own accord?

Minister:
The plenary session of the House of Councillors is now going to be convened. I have nothing to say on this.

Question:
The Japan-U.S. consultations over the reorganization of the U.S. forces finished yesterday. A joint statement is planned to be compiled before the visit to the U.S. by the Prime Minister for next week. What are your thoughts toward this round of negotiations?

Minister:
I feel we have further cemented the good relationship between Japan and the U.S. through these consultations. The actual negotiations were indeed quite hard and tough, but I feel that we have managed to define and express to a large extent the maintaining/strengthening of deterrence power, and the deepening/progression of the relationship between Japan and the U.S., as well as in removing the burden borne by Okinawa in ways that can be perceived. I will be making an announcement on this next week.

Question:
In the case where the number of personnel that is going to be relocated to Guam is less than what was agreed in the roadmap, are you thinking of negotiating with the U.S. side for a reduction in the amount to be shouldered for the cost of relocation to Guam?

Minister:
I would like to give an explanation when announcing this, including specific details.

Question:
The opposition has been questioning mishandlings over the response to the missile launch, which they have given as the reason for the censure motion. However, in actuality the SDF has been deployed in Okinawa and the J-ALERT and Em-Net did not function among the municipalities. As Defense Minister, how do you intend to explain this outcome to the municipalities in Okinawa?

Minister:
The MOD/SDF has been deepening their coordination with the municipalities, and the Okinawa Governor has expressed his feeling of gratitude on this, and I have also given my thanks for the cooperation that has been given. With regard to the specific municipalities, I would like to make contact and reiterate my thanks.

Question:
Do you intend to go to Okinawa to explain things?

Minister:
That would be for the future. I hope to go after the House of Councillors plenary session.

(End)

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