Joint press statement
issued on the occasion of the meeting between the NATO Secretary General, H.E. Mr Jens Stoltenberg and H.E. Mr Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan
Japan and NATO are reliable and natural partners, sharing common values of freedom, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law, as well as strategic interests.
We discussed how we can intensify our close cooperation in addressing current security challenges, including North Korea’s grave and growing threat to international peace and stability.
We condemn in the strongest terms North Korea’s nuclear tests and ballistic missile launches, which are in flagrant violation of multiple United Nations Security Council resolutions. We strongly urge North Korea to immediately and fully comply with all relevant UN Security Council resolutions, including the latest Resolution 2375 adopted unanimously on 11 September 2017. North Korea must honour its commitments in the 2005 Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks. We also urge North Korea to immediately end its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes and take concrete steps toward the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula.
We call on all member states of the United Nations to implement fully and transparently relevant UN Security Council resolutions. We urge them to make further efforts to apply decisive pressure on the North Korean regime to abandon its nuclear and ballistic missile programmes. We are committed to working closely together and with the international community to respond to this threat. We also express serious concern on North Korea’s flagrant violation of human rights and, in particular, strongly urge North Korea to immediately resolve the abductions issue.
We express our concern about the situation in the East and South China Seas. We reaffirm our opposition to unilateral coercive actions that could alter the status quo and increase tensions. Maritime disputes should be settled peacefully in accordance with international law. We are committed to maintaining a rules-based maritime order, including respect for freedom of navigation and overflight and other lawful uses of the sea, in full compliance with applicable international law, including as reflected in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
We are committed to building on our existing close ties and further deepening our political dialogue and active cooperation in areas of common concern. These include maritime security, cyber defence, nuclear non-proliferation and gender mainstreaming in peace missions, as well as upholding the rules-based international order and respect for borders in the face of a more challenging security environment. For this purpose, we note the progress on Japan-NATO cooperation, including Japan’s designation of a liaison officer to NATO’s Maritime Command (MARCOM). We are also committed to updating and further developing the partnership programme between Japan and NATO. This will allow us to work more effectively together and with the international community in order to ensure peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific and Euro-Atlantic regions.