Japanese Ambassador to Egypt Masaki Noke - Photo by Nourhan Magdi/Egypt Today
CAIRO- 18 January 2020: Japanese Ambassador to Egypt Masaki Noke commented on the recent visit of the Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the Middle East, saying that it was meant to boost bilateral relations and reduce tensions in the region.
In his statements to Egypt Today magazine Saturday, he said that Abe’s meeting with leaders of Saudi Arabia, UAE and Oman this month have witnessed appreciations to Japanese efforts for reducing tensions in the region among regional powers.
“There was an agreement to continue to work closely for the peace and stability in the region,” Ambassador Noke added.
Based upon those discussions and relations, PM Abe visited three gulf countries to share the understandings and work together.
“Prime Minister Abe had another objective that is to explain to the leaders of three countries that Japanese intentions to send self-defense forces in the area from Guf of Aden to North of Arab Sea,” said Ambassador Noke.
Noke went on explaining that Japan’s dispatch of Maritime Self Defense Forces unit, composed of a destroyer and two P-3C patrol planes in the region, “is to strengthen information-gathering in order to ensure the safety of vessels related to Japan navigating in the area.”
Abe’s visit to Oman was an occasion, in addition, to express condolences on the demise of former Sultan Qaboos bin Said, he added.
Noke also commented on a meeting between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to Tokyo last December amid rising tensions over Tehran’s nuclear program, and economic sanctions imposed by U.S.
Japanese Ambassador explained that Japan has traditional good relations with Iran and is an ally of the United States, adding that “Prime Minister Abe can speak with leaders of both countries, and we are working to decrease the tension, and try to solve the questions in a peaceful manner through dialogue.”
In a five-day tour from January 11 to 15, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Saudi Arabia, UAE and Oman. The visit came following retaliatory strikes launched by Iran targeting military bases in Iraq that host U.S. forces, after Iranian general Qasem Soleimani was killed in a U.S. strike that targeted him near Baghdad Airport.