Kishida to Weigh National Interests in Decision over Beijing Games

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 9 (Jiji Press)--Prime Minister Fumio Kishida suggested Thursday he will decide Japan's response over the Beijing Winter Olympics while giving due consideration to its national interests, after the United States, Britain and others recently decided not to send government officials to the February 2022 event in a so-called diplomatic boycott.

"I will decide the Japanese government's response at an appropriate time in the light of national interests after comprehensively considering diplomatic and other factors," Kishida said at a plenary meeting of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, the country's parliament.

Yuichiro Tamaki, head of the major opposition Democratic Party for the People, said that "Japan should consider joining the diplomatic boycott" in view of the human rights situation in China.

In response, Kishida, also president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, said only: "We place importance on fully protecting universal values, including human rights. They should be guaranteed in China, too."

At the Lower House plenary meeting, held over Kishida's policy speech at the Diet on Monday, the prime minister said that the government plans to secure some 500,000 doses of neutralizing antibody drugs, mainly used for COVID-19 patients with mild symptoms, by early next year.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press