April 12, 2022
Japan Ministry of Defense
On April 12, 2022, commencing at 7 p.m. for approximately 100 minutes, Minister Kishi held a Defense Ministerial Meeting with Minister of Defence of the Republic of Italy, H.E. Mr. Lorenzo Guerini.
- Minister Kishi welcomed Minister Guerini’s visit to Japan, and convening an in-person Defense Ministerial Meeting in Japan for the first time in 5 years. Minister Kishi stated that Japan is eager to work together for an even strengthened and irreversible European involvement to the region, as part of efforts to maintain and strengthen “Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP)”. From this context, Minister Kishi added that Japan welcomes progress in concrete defense cooperation between Japan and Italy, and would like to maintain the close cooperation between the two countries. Minister Guerini introduced Italy’s Indo-Pacific policy including EU Strategy for Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific and the EU’s Strategic Compass, in which Italy affirms the significance of Indo-Pacific region and cooperation with Japan, and expressed Italy’s strong support for FOIP. Minister Guerini also referred to the possibility of cooperation in the field of defense equipment including fighter aircraft.
- The Ministers exchanged views on regional security issues in Europe and the Indo-Pacific. Regarding the situation in Europe, Minister Guerini introduced the policy of Italy towards the situation in Ukraine. Minister Kishi stated that Russia’s aggression against Ukraine clearly infringes upon Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and a serious violation of International Law and UN Charter which prohibit the use of force. Minister Kishi also added that such act that unilaterally change the status quo is totally unacceptable and undermines the very foundation of the international order including Asia.
- The Ministers also exchanged views on regional security issues in the Indo-Pacific. The Ministers reaffirmed the importance of sending out messages together that we oppose to any unilateral attempts to change the status quo by coercion and that complying with the international law is critical. The Ministers also agreed on the recognition that it is important to strongly promote fundamental values such as freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. Regarding North Korea, the Ministers strongly condemned the launches of ballistic missiles by North Korea which violate UNSC resolutions, and agreed that those pose a serious challenge to the international community as a whole.
- Both as G7 members with great responsibility for the international community, Japan and Italy will continue to work closely on various issues.