The Foreign Ministry will create a new post for a senior officer overseeing the monitoring of human rights abuses amid a growing global focus on the issue, Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi has said.

Hayashi told a news conference Friday that his ministry has included in its budget request for fiscal 2022 starting in April the creation of a new position responsible for dealing with rights violations in its existing Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs Division.

The creation of the new post comes as Prime Minister Fumio Kishida looks to keep in step with major democratic nations that are locked in an intensifying standoff with China over the alleged repression of Uyghur Muslims in its far-western Xinjiang region and the crackdown on Hong Kong's pro-democracy movement.