Visiting French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has welcomed Japan's plan to provide $1.5 billion in emergency assistance to refugees in the Middle East and Africa, but declined to comment on whether Japan should do more to accept refugees from those areas.

"This kind of support is really important. We all know that the very cause of the problem must be solved," he told a small group of reporters from Japanese media outlets in Tokyo on Sunday.

Valls also stressed the importance of supporting such countries as Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon, which are absorbing massive numbers of refugees from Syria, and of providing support to the U.N. World Food Programme.