Thursday, August 23, 2012 (AM)
Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)
- The Takeshima issue
REPORTER: I have a question regarding the Takeshima issue. The Government of the Republic of Korea (ROK) has decided to send back the letter which Prime Minister Noda sent (to President Lee Myung-bak). Can you confirm the facts and tell us your thoughts on this?
CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: I believe at this stage there are only media reports. I understand that in diplomatic protocol, it is normally inconceivable for personal letters between leaders to be sent back. At any event, we have not received any word as of now about any decision of the ROK Government to send back the letter.
REPORTER: At this stage, what do you think about the Republic of Korea's statement that it will send back the letter on the basis of its contents being groundless?
CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: The purpose of the letter was to fully convey the present views of the Prime Minister to the Republic of Korea. We, therefore, wish the ROK to accept the letter.
REPORTER: As you said, it seems that the ROK is still finalizing its policy to send back the letter. However, as the ROK prepares to finalize this policy, what retaliatory measures, such as a review of the Japan-ROK currency-swap agreement, is the Japanese Government currently considering?
CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY FUJIMURA: My response will be the same as my responses up to yesterday. The Prime Minister issued instructions at the recent ministerial meeting on the territorial issue of Takeshima, and the lineup of measures is now under review. Nothing specific has been decided.