Thursday, June 7, 2012 (PM)
Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)
- The Senkaku Islands (the Japanese Ambassador to China's statement on Tokyo's plan to purchase the islands)
REPORTER: Regarding the Tokyo Metropolitan Government's plans to purchase the Senkaku Islands, Japanese Ambassador to China Uichiro Niwa has indicated that he opposes the purchase, telling a foreign media that, "If the plans are acted upon, then it will result in an extremely grave crisis in relations between Japan and China. We cannot allow decades of past effort to be brought to nothing." Was he expressing this view as the view of the Government?
CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: First, I am aware of the Ambassador's statement from the news reports. Ambassador Niwa was expressing his own personal view and not the Government's position whatsoever. With regard to Governor of Tokyo Shintaro Ishihara's statements on the purchase of the Senkaku Islands, the Government is now working to grasp the facts pertaining to the execution and content of the plans, and is conducting a range of reviews on the measures for continuing to peacefully and stably maintain and manage the Senkaku Islands. It would be incorrect to interpret that Ambassador Niwa's statement represents the view of the Government, and accordingly, I have been informed that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) has admonished Ambassador Niwa.
REPORTER: When you say MOFA admonish him, specifically what did it admonish him about?
CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: That the Ambassador's statement is different from the view of the Government.