Senior officials from Canada and Japan agree to collaborate on counter-terrorism

By on 20/04/2016
Members of 31 Canadian Brigade Group conduct urban operations during Exercise ARROWHEAD CALM at Meaford, Ontario on April 16, 2016. Photo: Master Corporal Precious Carandang, 4th Canadian Division Public Affairs

Canada and Japan have agreed to strengthen cooperation on counter-terrorism at a meeting involving high level officials this week.

The agreement was made during so-called ‘2-plus-2’ security talks held in Tokyo between senior officials from foreign and defence ministries of both countries.

Japan was represented by deputy foreign minister Shinsuke Sugiyama – a senior public servant ranked third in Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and vice minister of defence for international affairs Toru Mimura – a senior civil servant at the Ministry of Defence, who met with their Canadian counterparts Daniel Jean, deputy minister of foreign affairs, and John Forster, deputy minister of national defence – both the most senior civil servants at their respective departments.

In the third such meeting, officials also reaffirmed that nations must act in accordance with international law amid concerns raised by China’s construction and potential use for military purposes of facilities in contested waters of the South China Sea, Japan’s foreign ministry said.

The officials also agreed to continue to pressure North Korea to halt its nuclear weapon and missile development programs in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolutions banning such activities.

North Korea conducted a fourth nuclear test in January and a long-range rocket launch the following month, triggering expanded U.N. sanctions aimed at starving it of funds for its atomic weapons program.

Some experts expect North Korea to conduct a fifth nuclear test in the near future, possibly before a ruling party congress in early May, following an embarrassing failure of a test of an intermediate-range missile last week.

The bilateral meeting was held ahead of the G7 summit due to be hosted by Japan next month.

The summit will take place from 26-27 May in Ise-Shima, also called the Shima Peninsula in Southern Japan.

Items on the agenda include growing uncertainty in the global economy; foreign policy issues including counter-terrorism, the Middle East, Ukraine and North Korea; climate change; the U.M. sustainable development goals; health; infrastructure, and gender equality.

The G7 is an informal bloc of industrialised democracies comprising the United States, Canada France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom, which meets annually to discuss issues such as global economic governance, international security, and energy policy.

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About Winnie Agbonlahor

Winnie is news editor of Global Government Forum. She previously reported for Civil Service World - the trade magazine for senior UK government officials. Originally from Germany, Winnie first came to the UK in 2006 to study a BA in Journalism & Russian at the University of Sheffield. She is bilingual in English and German, and, after spending an academic year abroad in Russia and reporting for the Moscow Times, Winnie also speaks Russian fluently.

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