"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Statement by H.E. Mr. Fumio Kishida, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, at the TICAD V Ministerial Preparatory Meeting (Plenary 3: "Peace and Stability in Africa")

[Place] Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
[Date] March 16, 2013
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

Today, having heard from the participants statements filled with confidence and hope, I feel very keenly Africa's robust development potential leading to a bright future. Peace and stability are the major premise for linking this bright beacon of hope to alleviating poverty, overcoming other development issues, and ensuring certain growth.

The recent hostage incident in Algeria that resulted in a large number of victims including one Algerian and ten Japanese posed a major shock to the Japanese people, who have been working to build the future together with Africa, and particularly to Japan's business and industrial community, which have deepened their economic relations with Africa. Through this tragic incident, we came to feel very acutely once more that the issues of conflicts and instability, terrorism and piracy and the like are major impediments hindering development and growth. The resolution of these issues is absolutely essential for promoting trade and investment, and therefore, for Africa's rapid progress.

In the wake of this incident, I announced three pillars of Japan's foreign policy and set forth Japan's position in fighting resolutely against terrorism together with the international community. These are specifically, first, the strengthening of measures against international terrorism; second, support for the stabilization of Sahel, North Africa, and Middle East regions; and third, the promotion of dialogue and exchange with Islamic and Arab countries. I believe that at the upcoming TICAD V as well, the international community should show its strong determination to fight against terrorism together with Africa and to establish a safe society in Africa.

First of all, I am of the firm belief that what is most important is that Africa obtain the capacity to fight against terrorism itself. That is to say, what are necessary within each African country are the capability to maintain security, improvements in governance capability, including the development of legal frameworks, and the formation of state institutions that engender trust. And, the international community should engage in concerted support of Africa's efforts to build this safe society.

Next, I would like to underline the importance of creating a soil in Africa that does not give rise to terrorism as a fundamental solution. Actions to deal with terrorism are of course important. However, as long as there exist extreme poverty, youth unemployment, and other such issues, new terrorists will arise again. In order to build a society in which all people can move forward with hope towards the future, we must continue to advance social and economic development. This point is entirely consistent with the directionality of TICAD V.

Mr. Chair,

It is the sincere wish of all of us who are trying to live together with Africa that Africa become a land of peace and stability. I express my respect for Africa's own all-out efforts, notably those made by the African Union, in striving for peacebuilding and the consolidation of peace. And, believing in this power of Africa, I would like to appeal once more for the importance of partnership with the international community that supports it.

As efforts towards that end, Japan has on this occasion decided to provide a total of roughly US$550 million as assistance for African peace and stability. This figure includes, among others, assistance of approximately US$120 million for humanitarian relief for refugees and other persons in need in Mali and surrounding countries and capacity building in the governance and security sectors, assistance of approximately US$91 million for humanitarian relief and other matters in Sudan and South Sudan, and assistance of approximately US$55 million for humanitarian assistance in Somalia and capacity building of the police there. In addition, in order to support Africa's own efforts, Japan has decided on this occasion to provide a contribution of US$6 million to the Trust Fund in Support of the African-led International Support Mission in Mali, or AFISMA. We eagerly wish for these various kinds of assistance to advance substantially Africa's efforts for peace and stability.

Since the inception of TICAD, progress towards peace and stability has been made in many regions and this has constituted foundation for Africa's dynamism. However, it is also a fact that Africa is still faced with issues of peace of stability in some regions, especially in the Sahara belt ranging from the Sahel region to Somalia as well as the Great Lakes Regions. It is our sincere hope that Africa will achieve peace and stability and build foundation for further dynamism.

I firmly believe that TICAD V, which brings together under one roof the leaders of both Africa and the international community, is the best opportunity to discuss these issues that should be approached through orchestrating the wisdom of the international community.

Thank you very much for your kind attention.