Ten government agencies have designated 400 state secrets under the new secrecy law that entered into force Dec. 10, officials revealed Saturday.
The Defense Ministry accounted for the largest share. Most of its previous 244 state secrets, containing a total of 45,000 pieces of classified information, retained the designation. They include information about the performance of defense hardware, designs and drafts for such equipment, and information related to secret codes.
The Foreign Ministry designated 35 state secrets in eight fields, including the Japan-U.S. security alliance, the Korean Peninsula, the East China Sea, four islands off Hokkaido at the center of a territorial dispute between Japan, which claims them, and Russia, which controls them, as well as secret codes and intelligence.
The Cabinet Secretariat designated 49 state secrets, including satellite images and information on Japan’s cooperation with other countries.
Designated secrets numbered 15 at the coast guard, including satellite-related information.
The National Police Agency announced the designation of 18 state secrets in six areas including terrorism and human intelligence sources.
The Justice Ministry designated one information group, related to the preservation of territorial integration, as a state secret.
The number of designated state secrets “will rise further,” a government official said.
Under a Cabinet ordinance, 19 administrative bodies are authorized to designate state secrets. The 10 entities that have already started their designation process also included the National Security Council, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry.
The state secrecy law stipulates that information in four areas — defense, diplomacy, espionage prevention and counterterrorism — can be classed as state secrets. It is up to heads of the 19 entities to decide what information to designate as such.