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2008年9月30日 (火)

首相国連演説

(Mainichi Japan) September 29, 2008
Prime Minister Aso needs to consider the weight of his words
社説:麻生外交 発言の重みを自覚すべきだ

Prime Minister Taro Aso delivered a speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Thursday. He is the first Japanese prime minister to address that body in three years.
 麻生太郎首相が25日(日本時間26日)、ニューヨークでの国連総会で演説した。日本の首相の国連総会出席は3年ぶりのことだ。

There is a reason that Prime Minister Aso chose the U.N. Headquarters as the venue for his first official act as prime minster. The leaders of U.N. member countries deliver speeches there annually around this time of year, but during the past two years, Japan's two previous prime ministers, Shinzo Abe and Yasuo Fukuda, stayed away because the timing conflicted with the launch of their own administrations.
 就任したばかりの麻生首相が初仕事の場として国連本部を選んだのにはわけがある。国連では毎年この時期に加盟各国の首脳クラスが一般討論演説を行うが、日本の首相は昨年も一昨年も出席を見合わせた。安倍、福田両政権の発足と時期が重なったためだ。

If Japan's prime minister had missed this opportunity to address the U.N. for three years in a row, even though Japan attaches great importance to that organization, it would have had repercussions for Japan's international stature. This thought probably occurred to Prime Minister Aso, so although it is unusual for a prime minister to address the U.N. before delivering his own policy speech to the Diet, his decision to give priority to the U.N. by working this trip into his schedule was a good one.
 「国連重視」を掲げながら3年続けての首相欠席となれば日本の国際信用にかかわる。麻生首相もそう思ったのだろう。国会での所信表明演説の前に国連で演説するのは異例だが、強行日程をおして国連総会を優先したことは是としたい。

The prime minister gave his speech an Aso color by stating that Japan is committed to growing its own economy in order to contribute to the stability of the global economy.
 演説で麻生首相は、世界経済の安定に向け日本は経済を成長させることによって貢献していきたいとの考えを表明した。麻生カラーを出した部分だ。

He explained that Japan has carried out refueling operations in the Indian Ocean in cooperation with the campaign against terrorism and as part of the effort to assist in the reconstruction of Afghanistan, and said that Japan will "continue to proactively participate in unison with the international community in the fight against terrorism."
 テロ対策への協力では、アフガニスタン復興支援の一環としてインド洋での給油活動を行ってきたことを説明し、「今後とも国際社会と一体となりテロとの闘いに積極参画していく」と述べた。

His speech could be interpreted as signaling his resolve to continue the refueling operations. Given that the House of Representatives is expected to be dissolved soon, and that the outcome of the general election is uncertain, there is a possibility that the refueling operations may not be sustained. But even if that were to be the case, the prime minister has made an international pledge to "proactively participate" in the war against terrorism. Japan will have to pursue a policy that takes sufficient account of the importance of this pledge.
 給油活動継続への決意を示したものと受け取れる。早期に予想される衆院解散・総選挙の結果次第で給油継続が不可能になる可能性があるが、そうなっても首相が表明したテロ対策への「積極参画」は国際公約として残る。その重要性を十分に認識して対応していく必要がある。

One thing should be said with regard to the weight that the prime minister's words carry. After his speech, Prime Minister Aso stated, in reference to the Constitution's prohibition against the exercise of the right of collective defense, that it "basically should be changed." He might have thought that he was simply voicing his personal views in response to a question from the press, but this is probably not a topic that should be handled so casually.
 首相発言の重みに関し、ひとこと言っておきたい。麻生首相は演説後、集団的自衛権の行使を禁じた憲法解釈について「基本的に変えるべきものだ」と述べた。記者団に質問されたから持論を述べただけ、と思っているのかもしれないが、それほど軽々しく扱うべき話ではないだろう。

A committee of wisemen inaugurated by former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had issued a report on this topic that called for a change in the interpretation of the Constitution, but former Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda shelved the report. And even Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada has stated politicians "need to settle into their seats to talk over the issue." An issue that affects the foundation of Japan's national security policy needs to be debated in a calm environment.
 この問題では安倍晋三元首相が発足させた政府の有識者会議が憲法解釈の変更を求める報告書を出したが、福田康夫前首相が棚上げにした経緯がある。浜田靖一防衛相も「腰を落ち着けてゆっくり話した方がいい」と言っている。国の安全保障政策の根幹にかかわる問題は冷静な環境のもとで議論されるべきである。

In regard to Japan's diplomacy with its neighbors, Aso said that Japan would make an effort to strengthen its relations with its important partners China and South Korea. We hope that he treats Japan's relations with China and South Korea, which have gotten on track again, with great care and revives the summit diplomacy that involves alternating visits by the leaders of these countries.
 近隣外交について麻生首相は演説で、中国と韓国を重要なパートナーと位置づけ「関係強化に努める」と述べた。首脳往来が復活するなど軌道に乗り出した対中韓関係を大事にしてもらいたい。

Beijing in particular is alarmed by the "arc of freedom and prosperity" policy that Aso set forth while foreign minister, which it sees as a policy intended to contain China. Aso did not touch on this policy in his speech, but he asserted his belief in pursuing a "values diplomacy" that places a priority on building solidarity with countries that share the same basic values. He will need to provide a careful explanation of this point in order to avoid leaving the international community with a mistaken impression.
 首相が外相時代に新機軸として打ち出した「自由と繁栄の弧」構想には、特に中国が「対中包囲網だ」と警戒心を抱いている。演説ではこの構想には触れなかったが、基本的価値を共有する諸国との連帯を重視し、価値観外交を進める考えを表明した。この点については国際社会に誤解を与えないよう、ていねいな説明が必要になる。

毎日新聞 2008年9月27日 0時28分

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