Japan to Bolster Antiterrorism Steps after Baghdadi's Death
Tokyo, Oct. 28 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government plans to boost its counterterrorism measures going into next year's Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games out of concerns that terrorism will not end following the reported death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Islamic State militant group.
"We think it's a key step toward peace and stability in the Middle East," Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference on Monday, referring to Baghdadi's death, which was announced by U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday.
While welcoming the announcement by Trump, Suga said, "It's not that the fight against extremism is over, and the entire international community needs to continue its efforts to prevent IS from regaining power and spreading extremism."
A senior Japanese Foreign Ministry official said Baghdadi was a "symbol of IS" and that his death will impact the militant group. But a consensus among Japanese officials is that terrorism is likely to continue given a number of lone-wolf terror attacks have occurred across the world.
A senior Japanese Defense Ministry official said that the death of Baghdadi has created risks of terrorist attacks in retaliation.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]