Humanitarian aid for refugees key: Kishida, Hague

Kyodo

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and British Foreign Secretary William Hague, meeting on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York, agreed Tuesday on the importance of humanitarian aid in tackling the Syrian crisis.

Kishida and Hague agreed on the necessity of a strong U.N. resolution to address the crisis, with Japan’s top diplomat explaining Tokyo’s position that chemical weapons should not be tolerated and that the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad is to blame for the worsening humanitarian situation, a Japanese official said.

Kishida also briefed Hague on the government’s plan to create a Japanese version of the U.S. National Security Council and formulate a security strategy. Hague expressed a willingness to share Britain’s experience and knowledge, as London has already established a similar institution, the Japanese official said.

Hague also congratulated Kishida on Tokyo’s successful bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, the official said. London hosted the games in 2012.

Kishida later met Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy on Tuesday and expressed hope that the nation continue its shift to democracy after a military coup ousted President Mohammed Morsi following a spate of fatal clashes.