Japan foreign minister vows to uphold 'rule of law,' 'human dignity'

Japanese Foreign Minister Kamikawa Yoko has vowed to realize a world that upholds "the rule of law" and "human dignity" in her foreign policy speech in the Diet.

Kamikawa opened Tuesday's speech with references to Russia's ongoing invasion of Ukraine, describing it as a serious challenge to international order.

She promised to maintain and strengthen a free and open international order based on the rule of law, and promote foreign policies to realize a safe world where human dignity is protected.

The foreign minister mentioned her visit to Ukraine earlier this month, and stressed that efforts to unilaterally change the status quo by force must never be condoned.

Kamikawa said she will push for sanctions on Russia and aid for Ukraine. She added preparations will be sped up for a Japan-Ukraine economic recovery conference scheduled to be held next month in Tokyo.

On the situation in the Middle East, the foreign minister said she will work to help improve humanitarian conditions in Gaza, and that she will actively contribute to realizing a two-state solution where Israeli and Palestinian states co-exist.

Kamikawa described the Japan-US alliance as the cornerstone of diplomacy and security, and vowed to strengthen their deterrence and response capabilities.

She also described the realization of a free and open Indo-Pacific as one of her top priorities, adding that Japan will expand cooperation in its partnerships with allies and like-minded countries.

On relations with China, Kamikawa said Japan will comprehensively promote mutually beneficial strategic ties. She stressed the importance of forging constructive and stable relations through mutual efforts. She also pointed out the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.

On North Korea's continuing nuclear and missile development, Kamikawa expressed grave concern over the country's military cooperation with Russia. She said Japan will work closely with the United States and South Korea, as well as with the international community, in responding to the North.

Kamikawa also said she will promote a framework to have women play active roles in preventing conflicts and establishing peace. Its concept is known as "Women, Peace and Security," or WPS.