Statement by Hayashi Yoshimasa, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan in his capacity as Chair of the G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting at the Munich Security Conference.
The G7 Foreign Ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, and the High Representative of the European Union met for the first time under the Japanese presidency in 2023 and underlined their commitment to upholding the international order based on the rule of law.
The G7 members expressed their deepest condolences to the people of Türkiye and Syria as they contend with the effects of the February 6 earthquake. The G7 members are working together with partners to ensure needed humanitarian, crisis response, and technical assistance are made available unfettered. They therefore underscored the importance of full implementation of the decision to expand humanitarian access to Northwest Syria.
Nearly a year to the day after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the G7 members reaffirmed their unwavering solidarity with Ukraine for as long as it takes. They welcomed Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba’s participation in the meeting and Ukraine’s commitment to a just and lasting peace as demonstrated through President Zelenskyy’s remarks at the G20 Summit in November 2022. They committed to actively working with Ukraine to this end. They condemned in the strongest possible terms the Russian government’s unprovoked and brutal war of aggression against Ukraine. They urged Russia to immediately and unconditionally withdraw all forces and equipment from Ukraine and respect Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders. Members of the United Nations must refrain from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state in accordance with the United Nations Charter. They committed to, above all, defending this core principle against Russia’s aggression, for the benefit of not only Ukraine, but the entire international community.
The G7 members condemned Russia’s continued attacks on Ukrainian civilians and critical infrastructure. They underscored that there must be no impunity for war crimes and other atrocities, including attacks on civilian populations and infrastructure as well as the filtration operations and forced deportations of Ukrainian civilians to Russia. They reemphasized their commitment to holding all those responsible to account, including President Putin and the Russian leadership, in accordance with international law.
The G7 members remained committed to maintaining and intensifying sanctions on Russia to constrain its war effort and on those states providing material support for Russia’s illegal war
against Ukraine. They expected third states not to evade and undermine these measures, and called on third parties to cease assistance to the Russian military and its affiliated forces, or face severe costs.
The G7 members are committed to alleviating the global suffering caused by Russia’s war and the Russian government’s weaponization of energy and food. They reaffirmed the critical importance of continuing and expanding the Black Sea Grain Initiative and stressed the need for Russian authorities to increase the pace of inspections and operations to meet global demand. They denounced Russia’s continuous use of information manipulation and disinformation campaigns unfolded globally that seek to shift blame to others.
The G7 members reaffirmed their resolve to continue supporting Ukraine in exercising its right to defend itself against Russia’s invasion, including by providing military and defense assistance. They highlighted concerted efforts by G7+ partners in providing energy assistance to mitigate the effects of Russia’s brutal attacks on civilians and critical infrastructure.
The G7 members reiterated, while recalling that no nuclear weapon has been used for 77 years, that Russia’s irresponsible nuclear rhetoric is unacceptable and that any use of chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons or related materials would be met with severe consequences. They condemned Russia’s continued seizure and militarization of the Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant and called for the immediate withdrawal of Russian forces and personnel. They underscored their full support for the International Atomic Energy Agency’s efforts to address nuclear safety, security and safeguards concern in Ukraine.
The G7 members condemned in the strongest terms the launch of yet another Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) conducted on February 18, 2023 by North Korea. This act is in blatant violation of UN Security Council Resolutions (UNSCRs) and threatens regional and international peace and security. They strongly urged North Korea to fully comply with all obligations arising from the relevant UNSCRs. North Korea’s reckless behavior demands a unified response by the international community, including further significant measures taken by the UN Security Council. They called on all states to fully and effectively implement all UNSCRs.
The G7 members also reaffirmed their shared commitment to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific, which is inclusive and based on the rule of law, shared principles, territorial integrity, transparency, the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the peaceful resolution of disputes. They strongly opposed any unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force or coercion. They remained steadfast in cooperating with partners to ensure peace, security and prosperity of the world.