Japan Prepares for G7
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Japan Prepares for G7

Japanese officials are finalizing the agenda for the upcoming Group of Seven summit in Hiroshima.

The meetings, which start next Friday, will cover a range of topics, including Ukraine, China, North Korea, and nuclear disarmament.

The officials are also weighing additional themes, such as the global economy and finance after the coronavirus pandemic, climate change, and trends in digitalization including Artificial Intelligence. Establishing rules on the use of AI is considered a major emerging challenge.

PM Kishida speaking to reporters on Monday
Prime Minister Kishida speaking to reporters in Seoul after talks with South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol.

Prime Minister Kishida Fumio told reporters on Monday he wants to use the summit as an opportunity to reaffirm the G7’s unwavering solidarity with Ukraine. He also said the leaders will discuss challenges in the Indo-Pacific region, including East Asia.

Foreign Minister Hayashi to visit Sweden ahead of summit

Japan’s Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa says he will visit Sweden this weekend to attend a ministerial meeting on the security situation in the Indo-Pacific region.

Hayashi says he plans to share his view that security in Europe and the Indo-Pacific cannot be discussed as separate matters. He also says he hopes to affirm ties with countries that are committed to the international rules-based order.

Foreign Minister Hayashi says the upcoming G7 summit must include thorough discussions on the security situation in the Indo-Pacific region.

G7 leaders to discuss AI

Japan’s Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Matsumoto Takeaki says he is interested in seeing how the G7 leaders advance talks on the development and regulation of AI.

He said at a news conference on Tuesday that he plans to set up a platform for member nations to discuss the matter as soon as possible.

Last month, the digital and tech ministers of the G7 nations adopted an action plan to ensure the proper use of AI. They agreed on five principles that include respecting the rule of law and human rights.

Japan’s Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Matsumoto speaking to reporters on Tuesday.

G7 partners to enjoy Hiroshima cuisine and art

Japan’s Foreign Ministry has announced programs for the partners of the G7 leaders.

Kishida Yuko, the wife of Prime Minister Kishida, will host the activities.

On May 19, the group will attend a conference with local students on the topic of global peace.

They will then visit Miyajima Island just outside of Hiroshima City the following day. The island is home to one of the country’s most famous Shinto shrines, Itsukushima Shrine, which is a designated national treasure and UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Itsukushima Shrine was registered a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.

There they will sample okonomiyaki, a famous regional dish, and local beer.

On May 20, they will be joined by the partners of non-G7 leaders and visit a prefectural museum and a Japanese garden.

Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki is considered the city’s comfort food.

Atomic bomb survivor to call for nuclear disarmament

Setsuko Thurlow
Longtime anti-nuclear activist Setsuko Thurlow was 13 years old when the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima.

Setsuko Thurlow, a survivor of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and a prominent advocate against the use of nuclear weapons, has arrived in Japan ahead of the summit.

Thurlow, who lives in Canada, will hold a news conference during the summit and call for the total abolition of nuclear weapons. In 2017, she jointly accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons.

Upon her arrival, she told NHK that she expects world leaders to discuss the abolition issue and come to a good decision.

She will also give a speech at a university commencement ceremony on Wednesday.

Source: NHK World