Japanese foreign affairs minister Taro Kono reaffirmed on Monday that his country does not recognize self-proclaimed SADR as a state.
Rabat – Japan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Taro Kono reiterated in Rabat today his country’s firm position on Western Sahara, saying that Japan does not recognize the self-proclaimed Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR) as a “state.”
Commenting on Polisario’s presence at a ministerial preparatory meeting for TICAD VII in October, Kono said that the incident “in no way means that Japan recognizes, implicitly or explicitly,” the group as a state.
Kono is currently on an official visit to Morocco. The official made his remark on Japan’s position at a press briefing after his meeting with Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita.
Bourita said that Morocco and Japan agreed to reinforce their bilateral ties and to avoid any damage that might affect the Moroccan-Japanese bonds.
Later on Monday, Morocco World News attended a press conference given by the Spokesperson of the Japanese Foreign Ministry Mitsuko gave more clarifications on the country’s position..
She said that the presence of the so-called SADR “was a big problem” that Japan has overcome “to avoid embarrassment.”
She added that her country has “ good intentions to settle this issue.”
The Japanese official also emphasized the need to preserve the bilateral ties between the two countries from any “element that could weaken” the foundations on which these ties are based.
In October, a Moroccan delegation refused to take part in the 7th ministerial meeting of TICAD due to the presence of Polisario’s members.
Commenting on Polisario’s presence in the meeting in October, Taro said that “Even if a group which claims itself as a state which Japan does not recognize was sitting in this room, this fact does not mean that Japan, in any way, implicitly or explicitly recognizes it as a state.”
Kono also expressed “his deep regrets about the incident and the confusion during the opening session of TICAD ministerial meeting” during talks held with Moroccan foreign minister Nasser Bourita following the controversial incident.