Decision Regarding Assistance for the Middle East and North Africa Regions
1.On February 26, based on the approval of the FY2012 draft supplementary budget at the Diet, the Government of Japan decided to extend assistance to the Middle East and North Africa regions totaling 13.4 billion yen through international organizations.
2.The assistance consists mainly of: (1) assistance for regional stabilization, including assistance for refugee in response to the deteriorating situation in Syria; (2) assistance for the democratization of countries undertaking reforms since the “Arab Spring” (Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Jordan, Morocco) and economic assistance to address youth unemployment and to mitigate regional economic disparities; and (3) economic and financial assistance for Palestine.
3.This assistance will be provided as a concrete initiative of the “support for the stabilization of Sahel, North Africa, and Middle East regions,” one of the “three pillars” of Japan’s foreign policy in response to the terrorist attack on Japanese nationals in Algeria.
4.Japan will continue to extend political and economic assistance aimed at the stabilization of the region, recognizing that the stability of the Middle East and North Africa regions is essential for the stability of the rest of the international community including Japan.
(Note) The “3 pillars” of Japan’s foreign policy in response to the terrorist attack on Japanese nationals in Algeria
On January 29, Minister for Foreign Affairs Fumio Kishida established the following “3 pillars” of Japan’s foreign policy in response to the incident in Algeria, and pledged to actively set forth concrete initiatives under these pillars.
(1) Strengthening measures against international terrorism (2) Support for the stabilization of Sahel, North Africa, and Middle East regions (3) Promotion of dialogue and exchange with Islamic and Arab countries
Regarding concrete initiatives, the following have already been announced:
・Consideration of contribution of approx. US$120 million to support stability in Mali and the Sahel region (January 29)
・Strengthening of Japan-U.S. counter-terrorism cooperation (holding of bilateral consultations on counter-terrorism measures, cooperation on support for counter-terrorism capacity building of countries in the region, etc.) (February 22)
(* The foregoing is a provisional translation. The date indicated above denotes the date of issue of the original in Japanese.)